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Full text of "One man - one vote and Senate reapportionment, 1964-1966 : oral history transcript / and related material, 1978-1980"

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University of California Berkeley 

Stephen P. Teale 
Don A. Allen 


Regional Oral History Office 
The Bancroft Library 

Regional Oral History Office University of California 

The Bancroft Library Berkeley, California 

Governmental History Documentation Project 
Goodwin Knight/Edmund Brown, Sr., Era 


Stephen P. Teale The Impact of One Man-One Vote on 

the Senate: Senator Teale Reviews 
Reapportionment and Other Issues, 

Don A. Allen A Los Angeles Assemblyman Recalls the 

Reapportionment Struggle 

Interviews Conducted by 
James H. Rowland 
in 1978 and 1979 

With an Introduction by James H. Rowland 

Copy no . / 
Copyright (c) 1980 by the Regents of the University of California 


Covering the years 1953 to 1966, the Goodwin Knight-Edmund G. "Pat" 
Brown, Sr. , Oral History Series is the second phase of the Governmental 
History Documentation Project begun by the Regional Oral History Office 
in 1969. That year inaugurated the Earl Warren Era Oral History Project, 
which produced interviews with Earl Warren and other persons prominent in 
politics, criminal justice, government administration, and legislation 
during Warren s California era, 1925 to 1953. 

The Knight-Brown series of interviews carries forward the earlier 
inquiry into the general topics of: the nature of the governor s office, 
its relationships with the legislature and with its own executive depart 
ments, biographical data about Governors Knight and Brown and other 
leaders of the period, and methods of coping with the rapid social and 
economic changes of the state. Key issues documented for 1953-1966 were: 
the rise and decline of the Democratic party, the impact of the California 
Water Plan, the upheaval of the Vietnam War escalation, the capital punish 
ment controversy, election law changes, new political techniques forced by 
television and increased activism, reorganization of the executive branch, 
the growth of federal programs in California, and the rising awareness of 
minority groups. From a wider view across the twentieth century, the 
Knight-Brown period marks the final era of California s Progressive 
period, which was ushered in by Governor Hiram Johnson in 1910 and which 
provided for both parties the determining outlines of government organiza 
tion and political strategy until 1966. 

The Warren Era political files, which interviewers had developed 
cooperatively to provide a systematic background for questions, were 
updated by the staff to the year 1966 with only a handful of new topics 
added to the original ninety-one. An effort was made to record in greater 
detail those more significant events and trends by selecting key partici 
pants who represent diverse points of view. Most were queried on a 
limited number of topics with which they were personally connected; a few 
narrators who possessed unusual breadth of experience were asked to discuss 
a multiplicity of subjects. Although the time frame of the series ends 
at the November 1966 election, when possible the interviews trace events 
on through that date in order to provide a logical baseline for continuing 
study of succeeding administrations. Similarly, some narrators whose exper 
ience includes the Warren years were questioned on that earlier era as well 
as the Knight-Brown period. 


The present series has been financed by grants from the California State 
Legislature through the California Heritage Preservation Commission and the 
office of the Secretary of State, and by some individual donations. Portions 
of several memoirs were funded partly by the California Women in Politics 
Project under a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, in 
cluding a matching grant from the Rockefeller Foundation; the two projects 
were produced concurrently in this office, a joint effort made feasible by 
overlap of narrators, topics, and staff expertise. 

The Regional Oral History Office was established to tape record autobio 
graphical interviews with persons significant in the history of California 
and the West. The Office is under the administrative direction of James D. 
Hart, Director of The Bancroft Library, and Willa Baum, head of the Office. 

Amelia R. Fry, Project Director 
Gabrielle Morris, Project Coordinator 

May, 1980 

Berkeley, California 



Advisory Council 

Don A. Allen 
James Bassett 
Walton E. Bean* 
Peter Behr 
William E. Bicker 
Paul Bullock 
Lou Cannon 
Edmond Costantini 
William N. Davis 
A. I. Dickman 
Harold E. Geiogue 
Carl Greenberg 
Michael Harris 
Phil Kerby 
Virginia Knight 
Frank Lanterman 
Mary Ellen Leary 
Eugene C. Lee * 

James R. W. Leiby 
Albert Lepawsky 
Dean McHenry 
Frank Mesple * 
James R. Mills 
Edgar J. Patterson 
Cecil F. Poole 
A. Alan Post 
Robert H. Power 
Bruce J. Poyer 
Albert S. Rodda 
Richard Rodda 
Ed Salzman 

Mortimer D. Schwartz 
Verne Scoggins 
David Snyder 
Caspar Weinberger 

Project Interviewers 

Malca Chall 
Amelia R. Fry 
Gabrielle Morris 
James Rowland 
Sarah Sharp 
Julie Shearer 

Special Interviewers 

Eleanor Glaser 
Harriet Nathan 
Suzanne Riess 
Miriam Feingold Stein 
Ruth Teiser 

*Deceased during the term of the project. 



Through its Governmental History Documentation Project, the Regional 
Oral History Office has designated the subject of senate reapportionment as 
part of its Goodwin J. Knight-Edmund G. Brown, Sr. era volume series. The 
volume contains interviews with Senator Stephen P. Teale (Democrat-Railroad 
Flat) and Assemblyman Don A. Allen, Sr. (Democrat-Los Angeles), key legislators 
in the design of the 1966 senate reapportionment. 

As interviewer/editor for the Knight-Brown era project, I was honored 
with the opportunity to interview the leading political figures in the senate 
reapportionment struggle, a topic I had encountered briefly in my master s 
thesis interviews with Senator Teale. The topic of reapportionment can be 
confusing without an historical summary to familiarize the reader with events 
and issues mentioned in this volume of interviews. The following summarizes 
the twists, turns, and emotions of the reapportionment drama. 

In 1926 voters approved a referendum to apportion the senate by counties 
while retaining assembly apportionment by population. Heralded as the 
"federal plan" and vigorously supported by rural interests and the San 
Francisco Chamber of Commerce, the referendum provided that for a forty- 
member senate: 1) no county be divided so as to contain more than one 
senatorial district, 2) no more than three counties could be combined into 
any one district, and 3) no part of any county could be united with any other 
county to form a district. The "federal plan" reference implied that since 
the U.S. Senate was apportioned by states and the U.S. House of Representa 
tives by population, the California Senate would be apportioned by counties 
while the California Assembly would be apportioned by population. 

With the post-war population boom in Los Angeles County, protests 
emerged charging unfair and unequal representation of that county in the 
state senate. By the mid-1950s, Los Angeles County had a population of five 
million represented by one state senator, while the one senate district of 
Alpine, Mono, and Inyo counties combined had a total population of 14,000 
represented by one state senator. As a result of the 1926 referendum, the 
state senate drew a mix of predominately rural northern California legislators 
while the assembly increased its urban representation due to its decennial 
census reapportionments. Critics of the federal plan charged it produced a 
senate which favored north against the south, rural against urban, and 
conservative against liberal. 

After losing attempts to modify or eliminate the federal plan through 
initiatives in 1948, 1960 and 1962 (the latter two authored by Los Angeles 
County Supervisor Frank Bonelli) , the courts sounded the death knell for the 
federal plan. The Warren supreme court ruled in 1964, in its one man-one 
vote decision, that given the equal protection clause of the U.S. Constitution, 
the principle of equal population must prevail in both houses of a state 
legislature. Ironically, as governor, Earl Warren had been a strong defender 
of the federal plan against the 1948 initiative to modify senate apportionment. 

The Los Angeles federal district court continued the precedent by 
ruling that the federal plan of apportioning the California senate was uncon 
stitutional and added that a new plan must be adopted no later than July 1, 
1965, a deadline the legislature failed to meet. After defaulting on the 
federal court deadline, the California Supreme Court gave a reprieve in the 
form of ordering that both the senate and assembly be reapportioned in time 
for the 1966 primary. This signaled a two-way street agreement between 
senate and assembly leaders that resolved inter-house differences and paved 
the way for the eventual 1966 reapportionment formula. 

The inter-house differences and the senate s aversion to the one man- 
one vote decision illustrate a relationship of personalities and politics, 
and deserves further inquiry. In the senate, an odd concoction of remedies 
were proposed to modify reapportionment. Among them: a unicameral legisla 
tive proposal introduced by Senator F.rank Petersen (Democrat-Mendocino) at the 
request of Governor Brown. (The senator was reported to have hid to escape 
his fellow senators" wrath after the bill s introduction), and a split- the- 
state-in-half movement proposed by the Northern California County Supervisors 
Association and introduced as a legislative measure by Senator Richard Dolwig 
(Republican-San Mateo) . 

The senate s Maginot Line against reapportionment was the Dirksen amend 
ment. Sponsored by U.S. Senator Everett Dirksen, it would have created a 
federal constitutional amendment to the U.S. Constitution to allow one house 
of a state legislature to be apportioned on a basis other than population. 
In its support several prominent California senators toured nation-wide 
speaking to governors and state legislative bodies. Among the touring Cali 
fornia delegates was Senator Stephen Teale (Democrat-Railroad Flat), who came 
to the realization that the federal court decisions would not be reversed. 
It was Teale s reluctant decision to seek a reapportionment formula that won 
him the chair of the Senate Reapportionment Committee in 1964. 

Senate Bill 6, authored by Senator Teale, became the senate s reappor 
tionment formula. When SB 6 passed the senate, the inter-house shouting 
match began. As the bill stalled in the Assembly Elections and Reapportion 
ment Committee, chaired by Don Allen, the senate charged assembly leaders 
with attempting to seize control of the upper house through crippling and 
questionable amendments to SB 6. The assembly leaders countered with charges 
of senate smoke screen and diversionary tactics to delay reapportionment in 
hopes of passage of the Dirksen amendment. 


While charges and counter-charges were exchanged, the legislature 
defaulted on the federal court deadline of July 1, 1965. Granted a reprieve 
from the California Supreme Court, the legislature now had until the 1966 
primary to devise a reapportionment formula, provided the assembly be reap- 
portioned as well as the senate. Burying the hatchet, both houses united 
behind Assembly Bill 1, authored by Don Allen, which eventually met the fed 
eral and state court mandates. But the passage and signing of AB 1 did not 
end the reapportionment drama. 

The postscript came in the form of protests that the governor s office 
had interfered with the legislature by meddling in the reapportionment solu 
tion. As early as 1961 the senate charged Governor Brown with interference 
for creating the Blue Ribbon Reapportionment Commission (Wellman Commission) 
after voters defeated the 1960 Bonelli initiative to re-district the senate. 
And again in 1964 the governor dodged jabs of meddling in senate reapportion 
ment for his administrative bill to create a unicameral legislature. After 
the storm had seemingly passed and reapportionment had become a reality with 
the signing of AB 1, Assemblyman Don Allen charged the governor with betrayal 
of an oral agreement to sign a reapportionment correction bill containing 
liberal retirement benefits for reapportioned legislators. The reader is 
directed to the Allen interview for a thorough discussion of the governor s 
veto and Assemblyman Allen s reaction. 

The effects of reapportionment brought major transformations in senate 
operations. Out of 22 newly elected members to the senate after the 1966 
elections, 15 were former assemblymen familiar with assembly rules and proce 
dures. Partisanship and party caucuses replaced seniority and bi-partisanship, 
and Senate President pro Tern Hugh Burns gradually witnessed his base of 
support eroding. For those who were able to survive the reapportionment elec 
tions, like Senator Teale, the new senate resembled the assembly, with 
increased staffing, perquisities, and pay. For those defeated, resentment 
and bewilderment would reign until this day. Not only was it the court that 
killed the old federal plan senate, but it was the Earl Warren supreme court 
that delivered the one man-one vote decision that doomed the federal plan of 

This volume contains by no means the sum of remarks and reactions to 
the 1966 reapportionment struggle. The reader is directed to the following 
interviews in the Knight-Brown series for further discussion on the subject: 
lobbyist Coleman Blease, Governor Edmund G. Brown, Sr., Senator and President 
pro Tern Hugh M. Burns, lobbyist Robert McKay, Frank Mesple, Lieutenant Gover 
nor Harold J. "Butch" Powers, Senator Joseph Rattigan, and Senator Richard 


It is hoped that this volume will contribute to the understanding of 
legislative procedure and process and add to the primary documentation of 
reapportionment from those at the helm of the battle. 

James H. Rowland, Interviewer- Editor 
Governmental History Documentation Project 

25 March 1980 

Regional Oral History Office 

486 The Bancroft Library 

University of California at Berkeley 

Regional Oral History Office University of California 

The Bancroft Library Berkeley, California 

Governmental History Documentation Project 
Goodwin Knight /Edmund Brown, Sr. , Era 

Stephen P. Teale 


An Interview Conducted by 
James H. Rowland 
in 1978 

Copyright (c) 1980 by the Regents of the University of California 



Family History 1 
Growing Up in California 2 

Campaigning for Calaveras County Supervisor 4 
Senate Campaign: 1953 5 
Ties to the Democratic Party 7 

The Wellman Commission 13 
U.S. Supreme Court Decision: Challenge to States Rights 15 
Senators in Support of Dirksen Amendment 16 
Redistricting Los Angeles 19 
California Supreme Court Decision: A Two-Way Street 23 
Retirement Benefits and Reapportionment 28 

Impressions of Caspar Weinberger 44 
Role of the Liquor Lobby 45 
The Issue of Fair Trade 47 

Chessman Case 59 
Legislating the Death Penalty 61 
Pressures on a Lame Duck Governor 62 

Comparing Citizen and Special Interest Lobbies 67 
Changing the Style of Lobbying 68 
Comparing Legislative Secretaries for Governor Brown 69 

Joe Shell and the Independent Oil Companies 71 
The Question of Tidelands Oil Revenue 72 




Senator Stephen Teale was interviewed by the Regional Oral History Office 
for the Goodwin J. Knight-Edmund G. Brown, Sr. era segment of its Governmental 
History Documentation Project. Senator Teale s extensive background in state 
government and his principal role in the designing of senate reapportionment 
in 1966 made him a valuable contributor in our documentation of legislation, 
issues and events during the Knight-Brown era. 

As a medical doctor as well as a California native son whose ancestry 
goes back to Spanish California, Stephen Teale brought a unique background 
to the legislature when he entered in 1954. Born in San Francisco in 1916, 
he attended Fresno State College and the California College of Medicine. 
Upon completing medical school, he settled in Calaveras County in 1945 to 
open a family practice where he met hostility from local politicians for his 
insistence on open hospital admission of all county residents regardless of 
income. Taking his case to the people, he was elected county supervisor in 
1948. In his five year tenure as Calaveras County Supervisor he established 
an emergency hospital for patients in his district unable to drive seventy 
miles to the nearest general hospital. 

With the death of state Senator Jesse Mayo in 1953, Teale threw his hat 
in the ring as a contender in the open special senate election. Declaring 
himself a Democrat, he was assisted by Democratic notables Don Bradley, 
Roger Kent, and Pierre Salinger in a dark horse race against a strong 
Republican voting tradition. Winning the campaign on his popularity and the 
strength of absentee ballots, he entered the senate in 1954 as one of the 
first Democrats in the resurgence of the party after decades of Republican 

My first encounter with Senator Teale occurred while I was a graduate 
student at San Francisco State University. I had interviewed him on his 
criticisms of the state un-american activities committee, of which he was a 
member. After getting my first sample of Teale s depth of knowledge on the 
mechanics of state government, I felt honored to continue interviewing him 
under the auspices of the Knight-Brown era project. 

We arranged two interviews in the summer and fall of 1978. Held at his 
comfortable home in Railroad Flat, Calaveras County, and assisted by his 
astute and attractive wife Shirley, herself a veteran of state government, 
both interviews covered a wide range of topics during Teale s twenty year 
tenure in the senate. The principal topic was reapportionment based on his 
authorship of senate Bill 6 in 1965, the upper house s design for court 
ordered re-districting of the senate based on population. Other topics 
covered were his personal history, political campaigns, the liquor control 
controversy of 1954, the problems of legislating the death penalty, lobbyist- 
legislator relations, and the tideland oil debate. 


After rough editing, the interview transcripts were forwarded to 
Senator Teale for review. He returned the transcripts with few annotations 
or corrections, leaving the interviews in their original format. 

Highlighted by anecdote, charm, and country wisdom, the Teale interviews 
reflect a warmth and humor missing from present political circles. Indeed, 
some veterans of the capitol scene lament the vanishing qualities of bi 
partisanship and state-wide vision that Stephen Teale and other legislators 
in his era possessed. It is hoped that these interviews will preserve not 
only valuable recollections from a veteran legislator, but will serve as 
another model of political behavior for students of state government. 

James H. Rowland 
Interviewer /Editor 

10 April 1980 

Regional Oral History Office 
486 The Bancroft Library 
University of California, Berkeley 

[Interview I: 18 July, 1978 ]## 

Family History 

Rowland: There are certain historians who want to dig into ancestry and the 
whole family history of individuals. We want to get that on tape. 
A little bit of your geneology, your childhood, and perhaps 
turning points in your formative years. 

Teale: The family is rooted in California; in fact all four of my 

grandparents were born here. The first one that came into the 
state was a fellow named Tucker, Reasin Tucker. He was a 
mountain man and a fur trapper, worked with the American fur trade 
in the 1820 f s and 1830 s. He made his first trip into California 
in 1832, and he became a friend of Mariano Vallejo. Eventually, 
Vallejo got him a Spanish grant in Napa County that took in, 
among other things, the town site of Calistoga. He made I think 
he made about eleven trips on foot between here and Indiana. He d 
come out here one year and go back the next. Every time he d 
come out, he d bring one of his boys with him. 

Rowland: Who was the 

Teale: Reasin Tucker. 

Rowland: Reasin Tucker. R-e-a sin? 

Teale: Yes. Reasin P. Tucker. The last trip he made, he came across 

##This symbol indicates a tape or a segment of a tape has begun or 
ended. For a guide to the tapes see page 77. 

Teale: part way with the Donner party, and then left them back in the 
mid-Nebraska area, and came on to California on mule back. He 
was a friend of Reed, the Reed that got tossed out of the Donner 
party. During the winter, Reed hunted him up. Reasin was up 
at his ranch at Calistoga, and he and Reed organized some rescue 
parties. He walked into the Donner party three times. I think 
Reasin went in on the second, third, and fourth rescue trips. 
He didn t make the first one because he was sick. 

None of Reasin s family married into the Donner group, but 
there were a lot of the Donner people who had settled around 
Calistoga, so my grandfather grew up with them. Tucker was my 
great-great grandfather. My grandfather Teale s mother was a 
Tucker; she was the only one of the girls who came from Indiana. 
Great-grandfather Teale married her and brought her out here, and 
my grandfather was born in a covered wagon up around Bald Rock, 
in Plumas County. They mined, raised grapes, and trapped. Most 
of the family stayed around Napa County until World War I. 

My mother s side of the family also was around St. Helena. 
One of her uncles was a lawyer and a politician. His name was 
Theodore Bell. He ran for governor against Hiram Johnson in 1912. 
He was a congressman for several terms, and that perhaps is where 
I get some of my bent toward political activity. 

Growing Up in California 

Rowland: So you grew up in Coalinga? 

Teale: Yes; I went to Coalinga in 1920, when I was four. And then we 
moved all over. 

Rowland: You went to public schools in that area? 

Teale: Yes; .by the time I graduated from high school, I d been in twenty- 
five different schools. [Rowland laughs] That s hard to believe, 
but we moved about once every six months. 

Rowland: How come you moved so much? 

Teale: Well, because the oil industry was exploding all over the state, 
and my father was in the drilling end of it. He d wake up one 
morning and they d say, "Well, we want you in Santa Fe Springs 
tomorrow." Or, "We want you back in Coalinga." 

Rowland : 


Rowland : 


Was he working for any particular company? 

He worked for Shell most of his life. And then he did some time 
in South America and in Iraq doing oil exploration. 

And were you there, too? 

No, we never got there. But while he was overseas, we lived in 
different places. We lived in the San Joaquin Valley up around 
Fresno for a while, and we lived in Antelope Valley one time, when 
he was gone for a couple of years. In any event, I went to 
twenty-five different schools before I got out of high school. 
Now that gave me a pretty broad base on elementary and secondary 
education in California. [Rowland laughs] 

I should say. 

It also gave you a good perspective on the state, 

The first school I went to was in Dyerville, up in the redwoods in 
Humboldt County. There was an oil strike on in 1920, and my dad 
moved the family up there. He had a friend that was in the redwood 
business; he worked there making grape stakes and railroad ties 
out of down timber in what is now the redwood parks. They needed 
one more kid in that school to get two teachers , so my mother 
took me up and enrolled me. I went three hours a morning, so the 
school could get an extra teacher. I was one of three or four 
blondes in the school; the rest of the students were all Indians. 

I ve been to school in this state from one end of it to the 
other, and I have a good grasp of the geography and economics and 
all the social problems that you d find in the various parts of 


Campaigning for Calaveras County Supervisor 

Rowland ; 

Rowland : 
Rowland ; 
Teale : 
Rowland : 

Were you politically active in high school? 

No, I didn t get politically active until after I had got out of 
medical school. I didn t have time. I got politically active 
up here in 1948. I moved to this county in 45 and started 
medical practice. At that time, the supervisors acted as their 
own social workers, and they admitted everybody to the hospital, 
and granted aid. We had a supervisor locally that wouldn t give 
anybody form Oklahoma a permit to go the hospital. I was 
having a heck of a time during the winters, when nobody was 
working, and there was no medical insurance. If somebody got 
sick, they either had to go to the county hospital or not go at 
all. This old man, he wouldn t allow anybody in the hospital 
unless they were natives of the area. I got sick and tired of 
that, so I ran against him as supervisor and beat him. 

This was in 1948? 

1948, yes. 

What was the individual s name? 

His name was Claude Smith. 

This is Calaveras County. 

Calaveras; yes. I was supervisor for four and a half years, 
that period of time, we got a district hospital started. 


Rowland: That s the hospital down in San Andreas? 

Teale: Yes. We changed the eligibility rules, and we made it I think 
probably we were the first county hospital in the state in 
which you couldn t tell a paying patient from a charity patient. 
You just couldn t tell. They were in the same kind of a bed and 
in the same rooms. Nobody except the hospital business management 
knew where to send the bill. We contracted for medical services 
with the local doctors, and developed a pretty good medical care 

Senate Campaign: 1953 

Teale: Then, in 53, Senator [Jesse M. ] Mayo died, and I, just on a long 
hunch, ran for senator. 

Rowland: Who was supporting you for that race? 

Teale: Just me and my wife. 

Rowland: There wasn t any organized Democratic grassroots 

Teale: There never has been any organized Democrats. 

Rowland: So you didn t go out and seek endorsements first? 

Teale: Yes, I did. I sought them, it was just like always: the Democrats 
just split wide open. We had six Democrats running, and most of 
the Democratic county central committee supported the Republican. 

Rowland: Who were your opponents in that election? Do you recall? 

Teale: Yes, I think I can remember. There was a guy named Avery More; 
and Bob Romaggi, a young guy named Curran, who ended up as D.A. 
of San Diego County eventually, Bob Curran. 

Rowland: Bob Curran. More was a Democrat? 
Teale: More was, yes; all Democrats. 
Rowland: This was the primary? 

Teale: Primary. No it was an open special election. And there was a guy 
named Clyde Sherwood, and myself on the Democratic side. There 
was a fellow named Vern Rue, who was a Republican. Rue should 
have won it, but he went to sleep. He forgot about absentees. 


Rowland : 

Rowland ; 
Rowland : 

Teale : 

Rowland : 

Teale : 

Anyway, that was the first of eight or nine 
that Democrats won. 

How would you analyze your victory now? 

special elections 

Very tight. I won by forty-nine votes. And I won it I had a 
little pocket of votes down in Mariposa County, and a little pocket 
around the sawmills in Tuolumne County, and seventeen hundred votes 
right up here in my own supervisorial district, around West Point. 
I won it with a total of twenty-one hundred. 

How come you won? Can you pinpoint it, like your achievements 
as supervisor? 

Just because I d taken care of these local people as a supervisor. 
They were the ones who voted for me. 

The essence of our whole political system is that if you really 
serve your constituents, you re almost guaranteed your election. 
But you really have to serve your constituents. 

A lot of elected politicians forget that they get an idea that 
they are serving the best interests of the state, and that they 
have a high and mighty mission to perform. They re just vice- 
presidents in charge of little old tiny chicken manure sort of 
operations. [laughter] If they take care of the constituents, 
the constituents will take care of them. And that s all there is 
to it. It s just that simple. You re the buffer between the 
people you represent and the state government. That s your major 
function. Incidentally, you solve some major problems. But that 
isn t the function that the voter looks at. The voter looks at 
what you did for him yesterday, and what you re going to do for 
him tomorrow. And the voter remembers a little ten cent transaction 
a lot longer than he does the fifty dollar one. 

That s true. I think, U.S. Senator Eastland, who is a controver 
sial character himself in Mississippi, once said, "The reason I m 
re-elected all the time is because I get the veterans benefit for 
some guy who lives in my district who comes here all the way to 
Washington to try to get his retirement pay, and I go out of my 
office, and I get his retirement pay right then. And that word 
is passed around in my district, and that s why I m re-elected." 

I ve got a woman who lives down my road here about a half a mile. 
She was my county campaign chairman in 1966, or 1968 I can t 
remember which but she told me the other day that the first time 
she ever saw me was back in 1962, and I was in the service station 
in Mokelumne. They were in there. She was telling the service 


straightened out." 

Teale: station operator about her husband s troubles with the Veteran s 
Administration. They couldn t get a loan in Calaveras County 
because there weren t any sidewalks or streetlights. I d 
listened in while I was signing my credit card, and as I left, I 
said to her, "Well, you go to Sacramento, and you see a man by 
the name of Johnson in the VA, and tell him that I sent you to see 
Senator Teale sent you to see if you could get this loan 
And I just turned around and walked away. 
She said they decided they d take a chance and see. They weren t 
getting anywhere anyway. So they drove to Sacramento and they 
saw Mr. Johnson. They walked in, and he says, "What can I do 
for you?" and they said, "Well, Senator Teale told us to come and 
see you about our veteran s loan. We re having difficulty with 
it." She said, "We had it by the time we walked out." And she 
says, "It s a hell of a thing if you have to be a name-dropper in 
order to get something," but she says, "that was my first contact 
with you, and it was very impressive." What she didn t see was 
that behind her episode I d had about six or eight cases up here 
that I had to go to bat for and work for months and months and 
months to get the problem straightened out. I had to get them to 
recognize that our land was just as valuable and was to be resold 
just as well as a tract in Modesto or Sacramento. Even though 
it didn t look as attractive to those bankers that were running 
the veteran s loan program down there. 

Rowland: Down in San Francisco and Los Angeles? 
Teale: Yes. 

Rowland: Well, why don t we jump into the meat of this here. I m interested 
in your connections and your function in the Democratic party as 
a senator. And also in your analysis of the thesis that there 
were rural versus urban and north versus south divisions in the 
party that overlap to the reapportionment battle. We have a note 
in our office that your former wife was chairman of the Calaveras 
County Democratic party in 1953. 

Ties to the Democratic Party 

Teale: Yes. Yes. 

Rowland: So you had some roots there in 1953. 

Teale: Yes. It was kind of funny how she got involved. She came in one 
day, and she said, "What the heck is this central committee on the 


Teale: ballot?" And I said, "I don t have any idea what they do." She 

said, "I think I ll find out." So she went up and she got about 
fifteen people to write her name in, and she got elected to the 
Democratic central committee of Calaveras County, and then it was 
about six or eight months after that episode that I decided to run 
for senator. So she was on the central committee at that time. 
I don t remember whether she was the chairman of it or whether 
she was just a member, but that s how she got on. She got on out 
of curiosity. 

These small county central committees really don t do very 
much here. In 1953 there were only about eight members of the 
Calaveras central committee, and they d been there for forty 
years prior to that. So there wasn t much doing. 

Really, in the first years I was in politics, the Democratic 
party in California was pretty disorganized. The Republicans 
had lived with the slogan, "Vote for the man, not the party" for 
about twenty or thirty years, ever since Hiram Johnson was elected. 
Even though the Democrats outnumbered the Republicans two to one, 
they made it sound like it was a dirty thing if you professed to 
be a Democrat. Now, it was all right for the Republicans to be 
Republicans, but they weren t partisan, by their explanation of it. 

When I decided to run for the senate, I decided that I would 
take a chance and be a Democrat. I ran on a Democrat name. I 
advertised it on my billboards and every place I spoke; I made 
it real plain right at the outset that I was a Democrat. I m not 
sure that I understood what the Democrats stood for in those days. 
I thought the Democratic party was Franklin D. Roosevelt 
re-incarnated, you know. 

I was sixteen when Roosevelt got elected. I still think that 
the only reason I ever survived the damn Depression was that 
Roosevelt was there and got the business going again so we could 

Rowland: You think there was still, in 1953, a grass-roots support for the 
image of Wilson and FDR in the Democratic party? 

Teale: Yes, yes. Particularly people who had been hungry during the 

Depression. Roosevelt was a God for them, and then Harry Truman 
had come along and really reinforced the image. I guess even 
today there are a great, great many people who think that 
Harry Truman was a vast improvement over Roosevelt. Maybe because 
they remember him better. They don t remember Roosevelt in his 
prime. I think Harry Truman was a great president, because he 
got things done. He was a little bit tough and rough the way he 
did it, but he got things done. 

Rowland: Moving up to the California Democratic Council, what was your 
relationship with the CDC? 

Teale: I m not sure that I approved of everything they did. When 

Unruh came along, he made that his own personal operation. I 
thought the CDC served a real function in trying to put the 
Democratic party back together again. 

Rowland: Were you active at all? Did you seek any positions in the CDC? 
Teale: No, I went as a delegate for a number of years. And I served as 
Rowland: Delegate to their conventions? 

Teale: Yes, and I served as head of their resolutions committee a couple 
of times. Made some good friends with people like Cranston, and 
those folks, when they were running it. I became friendly with 
George Miller right away, as soon as I went to the senate. In 
fact, he came up here to help me in my campaign. He and 
Van Dempsey and Pierre Salinger. In fact, my campaign was the 
first one that Salinger worked on. 

Rowland: When was that? 
Teale: 1953. 

Rowland: That s very interesting. You ve heard the argument about Salinger 
coming to California in 1964 to get Clair Engle s seat? Some 
people have said that he was a carpetbagger. 

Teale: Yes. Well, Salinger took two weeks off and came to Calaveras 
County and he moved right in the house with me. Of course, we 
only had a six weeks campaign, so the campaigning had to be real 
fast. But we put together our press and advertising and sat 
right here at this table. 

To get back to your original question, I m not sure that 
anybody was playing a very heavy role in the Democratic party 
with the exception of maybe Cranston and Miller in those first 

Rowland: Richard Richards, too, perhaps? 

Teale: Well, Richards came along in 1958. He was trying to put together 
some stuff, too. There was also Elizabeth Snyder and 
Carmen Warschaw. And of course, the CDC would develop factions. 
The L.A. group split up into factions and they started fighting 
among themselves. 


Rowland: So there is that north versus south 

Teale: Well, Unruh and Warschaw were fighting Liz Snyder and Richards. 

There was more of a south versus south fight, rather than a north 
versus south. The guys that were in the legislature didn t really 
pay a hell of a lot of attention to the CDC. When asked to, 
myself and other legislators participated, and some of our par 
ticipation wasn t particularly welcome, and some was. It was kind 
of a mixed bag, and I m not sure it was very effective as far as 
getting Democrats elected. 

In electing Democrats, you had Roger Kent, you had Van Dempsey, 
and you had a guy named Don Bradley. With those three people put 
together you had Kent furnishing the money, and Bradley and 
Van Dempsey furnishing the know-how. And they put together nine 
consecutive special elections that they won. I was the thirteenth 
Democrat, when I went in. It had been lower than that; it had 
been down to eleven at one time. After the 1958 election, we had 
about twenty- five. So we doubled our strength there in about 

Rowland: The Democratic success in the 58 election you d say was due to 
Kent, Bradley, and Van Dempsey? 

Teale: Basically, yes. I think they were the movers. They went out and 
they hunted up candidates. They saw that they got some money, 
and they helped the candidates with know-how on how to put their 
program together. 

Rowland : One theory holds that the CDC was an urban phenomenon that grew 

out of the Stevenson campaign; it was centered around Los Angeles, 
Berkeley, Marin, and had some friction with the conservative 
Democrats from the Valley, such as Burns. 

Teale: Oh, yes. But the friction was between individuals. Kent, Cranston, 
Don Bradley, and Carmen Warschaw put together the CDC. They put 
it together starting about 1954. They had a momentum of special 
elections going that really gave them strength. Numerically, 
it was urban, but geographically it was spread all over the state. 
Every county in California, including Alpine County, had 
representation at those meetings back in the mid-1950 s. The 
people form the north, south, east, and west really went at it 
hammer and tongs. You had more money coming out of the urban 
areas, but you had an awful lot of grass-roots support from 
around Chico and Redding. Stockton was a big hot-bed, and also 
Sacramento, Modesto, Fresno, Bakersfield. Every place where there 
was a collection of people you d get at least forty people 
together. At that time, in the late 50 s, here in Calaveras 
County, we had a Democratic Club that was associated with CDC that 


Teale: had about eighty-five members. Hell, previously, you d never 

been able to get more than four Democrats together at one time, 
and you had to have beer to do that. 

Rowland: There were a lot of changes that have happened with the Democratic 
party during Pat Brown s years. 

Teale: Yes. 

Rowland: Wasn t there a schism between the CDC and the Democratic State 
Central Committee? 

Teale: Yes. 

Rowland: How did that schism begin? Was it due to Jesse Unruh? 

Teale: I think it was Jesse versus Miller and Cranston. Jesse wanted to 
control the CDC; other people didn t want him to control it. 
Jesse only understood one kind of control and that was total 
control. He couldn t be content with influencing. 

Rowland: Was Jesse Unruh representing kind of a Democratic machine politics 
from southern California? 

Teale: No, he created a Democratic machine. I don t think prior to that 
we had a Democratic machine. 

Rowland: Was he strictly a southern California kind of politician? 
Teale: Yes. Rosalind Weiner used to be a city councilwoman down there. 
Rowland: W-e-i-n-e-r? 

Teale: Liz Snyder could give you a better view on that than I could, 

because I didn t pay a great deal of attention. I was considered 
an ultra-liberal when I went into the senate. It took me a long 
time to make real good friends with some of the older people. 

Rowland: You would say Rosalind Weiner was the force behind Unruh, one of 
the organizers behind Unruh? 

Teale: She was one of the people who was with him. 
Rowland: And she was an L.A. 

Teale: city councilwoman in the late 50 s, early 60 s. Her husband 
held some office in the CDC. I can t remember what it was, now. 


Teale: But Weiner had the support of people in the legislature, who were 
older. I won t say that they were basically any more conservative 
than the new people, but their brand of liberality was more of the 
type that FDR had in 1932 than what Jesse Unruh had in 1956-58. 

As time goes on, the liberal of one day becomes the conser 
vative of the next. And in that group you had Hugh Burns. You 
also had George Miller who was more liberal than Burns, or a 
different "period" of liberal, but Miller still had a great deal 
of conservatism in him. And then, I came along in 1953. By the 
time 65 came, I was considered a conservative, and I still had 
the same liberal tendencies as I had had in 53. I was still 
a civil libertarian and believed in a lot of social programs, 
but the new kids coming along had a different view of what 
liberality meant. The older you get, the more conservative you 
get. I think that s what happened to Burns, and it happened to 
other older men in the senate. 



The Wellman Commission 

Rowland: Why don t we just jump into the reapportionment question. The 
first thing that I dug out of talking to Frank Mesple yesterday, 
was the question on why the senate rejected the Wellman Commission 
back in 1962. This was after Frank Bonelli s initiative was 
defeated in 1960. Pat Brown called for a blue ribbon commission 
to study reapportionment, and the commission recommended that 
Los Angeles be given three senators. And then the senate 
rejected it. How come? 

Teale: I guess probably one of the basic reasons was that the people 
from L.A. didn t want it. 

Rowland: The L.A. senator? Or the L.A. senator and assemblymen? 

Teale: The L.A. senator. The reason was that, prior to any reapportion 
ment, you had twenty some assemblymen from L.A., and you couldn t 
get any sense out of any of them. In order to get any sense 
about legislation that affected L.A. County, the only way you 
could do it was to wait until the legislation got to the senate 
and then talk to the L.A. senator, 
and he proposed to represent L.A. 
pretty good job of representing L.A. The L.A. people weren t very 
enthusiastic; there were some people who wanted a total 
reapportionment, but when they got that blue ribbon commission s 
report, number one, the L.A. people weren t very enthusiastic 
about it, 

Rowland: When you say the L.A. people 

Teale: The L.A. senator and the L.A. assembly. 

He spoke with a single voice, 
I think generally he did a 


Rowland: Is it that they felt through give and take with northern senators, 
they could get what they wanted? 

Teale: Well, you ve got to understand how the senate worked those years. 
If the L.A. senator said to the senate, "This is bad for L.A. 
County; this is bad f o r the people I represent," usually it didn t 
get passed. If he came and he said, "It is good for the people 
I represent; we should have it, and these are the reasons," and 
if the reasons were fairly substantial, the rest of the senate 
went along with him. The senate was not as provincial as 
Frank Bonelli and the other people, old man[Phill] Silver and 
those that prosecuted the lawsuit, would make out. We did a 
study in 64 or 65, we had legislative counsel take a look, and 
find out where the major legislation that affected cities had 
originated. About ninety-nine per cent of it originated with 
rural senators like myself, Randy Collier, and Chris Jespersen 
people who had small districts and had time to work. 

Rowland: This was a special study that you and your reapportionment com 
mittee did? 

Teale: Yes. We had them dig it out, and 

Rowland: This was your senate special committee on reapportionment? 

Teale: No. The rules committee did it; we just asked the legislative 
counsel who was Ralph Kleps. We asked Kleps to take a look and 
see what major legislation that affected cities and urban areas 
was initiated by rural senators. Urban legislation had virtually 
all been authored by guys from very rural districts. The rural 
guys put together the water plan for Brown so that it made sense. 
We put together the highway, freeway program that linked the cities 
and made them a heck of a lot more functional at that time. It 
later became a dirty word to talk about freeways. But for program 
after program there was a benefit basically to cities that came 
out of rural districts. I guess that s for two reasons: number 
one, the men in the senate were pretty broad caliber fellows who 
had a statewide perspective, and number two, there: was a certain 
economic spin-off from all of this legislation that made the rest 
of the state prosper. We prospered, too. 


U.S. Supreme Court Decision; Challenge to States Rights 

Rowland: What was the senate reaction to the U.S. Supreme Court decision 
affecting Alabama and California? 

Teale: Well, at first it was total disbelief total, total disbelief 
that anybody d be so stupid as to interfere with the state 
constitution. We had sort of the same reaction that the Southern 
states had prior to the Civil War. We kind of felt like it 
involved states rights. Then the bulk of the people in the 
legislature said, "Well, we ll just ignore it for a few years. 
After all, what can they do to us? What can they make us do?" 
And that s where it stood in 64, in the summer. That s when we 
began to get a rash of decisions from not only Alabama, but other 
states, saying that you had to have equal representation to be 
cons titutional . 

Rowland: Now, what was the reaction of senators who remembered Earl Warren 
in his governorship? What was the reaction to people concerning 
Earl Warren s decision? Frank Mesple said legislators were aghast. 
They couldn t believe that Earl Warren could make a decision like 

Teale: It was total disbelief that such a decision was possible. 

Well, I got involved in reapportionment in July and August 
of 1964. Virgil Sullivan, who was senator from Colusa County, 
drove with me to the national Democratic convention in Atlantic 
City. The reason we drove is that we wanted to look at some 
medical schools along the way. We were on the budget subcommittee 
that was looking at the UC medical schools. So we planned the 
trip, and we saw about fifteen, maybe eighteen medical schools 
across the United States. We stopped and talked to medical 
school administrators about their financing and about their organ 
ization and hiring practices basically about administrative affairs 
rather than academics. But in the course of going across the 
United States it took us about five weeks coming and going we d 
listen to the radio and read the papers about reapportionment. It 
was getting in the papers pretty much then, and also in the radio. 
In the course of that trip, Virgil and I decided that reapportion 
ment was going to be a fact of life. So when we got to Atlantic 
City, I was the only member of the rules committee there. We had 
about twelve or fourteen [California] Democratic legislators 
there also. So I called a meeting, and we sat down and we 
discussed what was happening in the reapportionment field. After 
the meeting, they 


Rowland: This meeting was with the California congressional delegation? 

Teale: No, this was with state legislators. There were some assemblymen 
and there were about eight or nine state senators. There was 
Bobby Williams, Fred Farr, Stan Arnold, George Miller, myself, 
and 0* Sullivan there was quite a group. And so, after we talked 
it over, they asked me to call senate pro tern Hugh Burns back here 
in California and see if I could set up a special committee to 
begin to try to figure out what we could do. You know, everybody 
was talking about passing a federal constitutional amendment, 
or simply ignore Chief Justice Warren and tell him to go to Hell. 
Some guys said, "We re going to have to do it. Maybe if we can 
use a fifteen per cent tolerance in the districts, we can save " 

Senators in Support of Dirksen Amendment 

Rowland: Who were those senators who stood out in favor of, I guess it s 

called the Dirksen Amendment, the federal constitution amendment? 

Teale: All forty of them. 

Rowland: All forty of them. Who were those state senators who realized 
that something had to be done? 

Teale: I think at that point, Sullivan and myself were the only two. 
We realized that we d have to reapportion, so let s get on with 
dying and get moving. So I called up Hughie Burns and asked him 
to call a meeting of the rules committee as soon as I got back to 
California, (which was going to be in about two or three weeks 
from then) to discuss setting up a special committee. Burns did 
that; he called a meeting of the rules committee, and we met in 
Sacramento. We decided to make a thirteen man committee, I was 

Rowland: [laughter] Now wasn t there a committee before this which 
Senator Edwin Regan chaired? 

Teale: No. Tell you what Ed did. Ed and I worked together on that. It 
was just an unofficial committee to see if we could influence 
congress to pass a federal constitutional amendment. I m not 
sure whether that was before or after our committee was formed. 
Ed Regan was on that reapportionment committee. Let me shut this 
thing off a minute. [tape recorder shut off] 

Now, talking about Regan and his activities, Ed and I went 
to Washington, and we spent a week one time trying to lobby the 
California congressional delegation. I m sure this was right after 


Rowland ; 
Teale : 


Was that with Joe Rattigan, too? 

No. Joe Rattigan, Begovich, Hugh Burns, Jack McCarthy and some 
of the others did some work among the other states, trying to 
get Texas, Alabama, and Georgia to support the amendment. They 
went to Georgia and talked to Lester Maddox, who was governor, 
and they went and talked to [John] Connally, governor of Texas, 
[tape recorder turned off] 

Anyway, Ed Regan and I went to Washington, and we stayed 
five days. When we came back on the plane, I said to Ed, "What 
are you going to do?" He said, "I m going to get a judgeship." 
I said, "Aren t you going to work for an amendment?" He said, 
"There isn t any amendment that is going to get passed." He said, 
"You don t think there is, do you?" And I said, "No. I m going 
to go back and work out a reapportionment plan." And that s all 
that trip amounted to. 

There was a great deal of activity for about a year to try 
to get some change in the federal constitution. The federal 
people weren t the least bit interested in the amendment. The 
federal Senators were protected by their constitution, and they 
didn t care about the rest of the people. And congressmen could 
care less. 

So nothing happened. We started in August of 64 putting 
the reapportionment committee together. As I said, we had a 
thirteen man committee, and I was chairman of it. I had one 

Now, this was strictly a senate it wasn t a joint committee. 
No, it was not a joint committee. It was strictly senate. 
This is early 65. 

Late 64. August of 64 we went to work. I hired a fellow named 
Art Johnson, who was a retired statistician out of the Army. We 
put him to work in September of 64, and we sat down and began to 
assess the effect of reapportionment. The best we could come up 
with would be that only twenty of the forty senators would be re- 
elected out of any sort of a reapportionment plan. That didn t 
sit very well with the rest of the senate. But they didn t know 
what to do about it. So the senate said, "Go ahead and continue 
to work; see if you can work out anything better." 

By December of 64, I think, we pretty well had the 
reapportionment map set. By that time we d done exercises that 


Teale: showed that you had to start at the four corners of the state. 
And worked into the Bay Area and into L.A. County. Other than 
that, the only consideration we gave to any particular individual 
was that we preserved Hugh Burns district intact in Fresno County. 
It was an understanding the entire senate had that that was a 
desirable thing to do. 

Rowland: So the senate Democratic leaders districts remained intact? 

Teale: Just Hugh Burns district. Burns had three hundred and sixty 
five thousand people and needed four hundred thousand. We kept 
his district intact, and worked around it. And that s how we 
got that goofy district line 

RowlancJ: . Was that done as a measure of respect for Hugh? 

Teale: Yes. He was the leader of the senate; he was the pro tern, and 

everybody liked him and trusted him. Even the people who didn t 
like him, didn t dislike him that much. 

Rowland: Backtracking to the [Charles] Wellman reapportionment commission: 
I understand that the senate had gotten along very well with 
Governor Brown s office, but that it felt some hostility to 
Governor Brown when he stepped in and appointed the Wellman blue 
ribbon reapportionment commission in I960-. Previously, there was 
a good relationship because the senate and assembly leaders were 
fighting it out. Would you share that analysis? 

Teale: Well, I think that senators felt that Brown didn t need to appoint 
the Wellman commission. We felt that by our constitution, 
reapportionment is the duty of the legislature, and nobody else. 
When he appointed the Wellman commission, he felt that we weren t 
moving fast enough or not moving at all on reapportionment. 
We didn t intend to move at that time. Brown got the mistaken 
idea that somebody ought to be doing something. We didn t even 
have some final cases, at that time. We just waited to see what 
the Supreme Court was going to do. After that, the U.S. Supreme 
Court began to hand down a series of cases. Then we began to 
move. And again, I think that the only two people in the senate 
who thought that we had to move were Sullivan and myself. 

Anyway, we put together a basic reapportionment plan, but 
we didn t know what to do. We were finally able to divide up the 
Bay Area pretty well, but we couldn t get any consensus about 
downtown San Francisco. So we came to the conclusion we would 
have an at large district. We made a tentative split of the Los 
Angeles area. It was pretty close to what it is currently. 


Re-districting Los Angeles 

Rowland: But you had at large elections, right? 

Teale: Just in San Francisco. 

Rowland: You didn t have at large elections for L.A. 

Teale: No. The reason we didn t was that Unruh came to the senate, and 
he and I discussed the situation. He said that he had some 
people that he wanted to protect in Los Angeles. I had no 
objection to him trying to protect his assemblymen if he wanted 
to, or even get them elected, because that was where they were 
probably going to come from. So I laid down some rules to him 
about splitting of cities and getting odd looking districts 
scattered all over the country the long strings of districts here 
and long strings there. He said that he would be willing to 
abide by that agreement, so I said, "Go ahead and make a tentative 
description." He did, and then we took those descriptions 

Rowland: This was before it was presented as senate bill 6? 

Teale: Oh, yes. It took us about fifteen months to put this together. 
We took Unruh s division of Los Angeles County and we worked it 
out. And we worked it on census tracts and put it together, and 
ironed out the little jogs and jigs that were in it, so that they 
made pretty square, good looking districts. We had a couple of 
problems, like the one that ran from Santa Monica down the coast. 
It was a long stringy district. And we had to slop into Ventura 
County for a district, and we had to slop into Orange County for 
half of another district. But basically, we just set down the 
rule that a district in general had to be compact. It had to 
preserve the nearest possible county boundaries; if it couldn t 
preserve county boundaries, it had to respect city boundaries. 
We only got one place where we divided a city right down the 
middle, and that was Exeter, or Lemon Grove, or one of those little 
towns in Tulare County. We simply didn t have a good enough 
description of the city to make it come out right. So we went 
right down the middle of Main Street. 

Rowland: There were Republicans on your thirteen-member committee, weren t 
there? . 

Teale: Sure there were. 

Rowland: What was the Republican reaction? Senate Republican reaction? 


Teale: Same as the Democrats. 

Rowland: They supported the district elections in L.A. County, even though 
that was Unruh s little 

Teale: Yes. Because no matter what Unruh did, he could only do about so 
much to the Republicans, and in doing it to the Republicans, he 
turned around and did it to some of his Democrats, too. You 

Rowland : One theory holds that Unruh was a man who wasn t really a party 
politician, but was one who played with both parties, basically. 

Teale: Yes, I think he did. If he had a key Republican, he preserved 

him, if the guy worked for him. Assemblyman Milton Marks is one 
of the great examples. Miltie was always a good vote for Unruh, 
so Unruh protected him. But, when we got right down to it, the 
assembly voted for reapportionment of the senate because there 
wasn t much they could do about it. 

Rowland: This question backtracks to that 64 Democratic national conven 
tion held in Atlantic City. We have a note in our office that 
CDC people were prominent in the convention and were pushing LBJ 
to back reapportionment as a presidential candidate. Do you recall 

Teale: I was too damn busy. 

Rowland: There seems to be a division here, a division in the Democratic 
party overlapping to reapportionment. Not to mention that you 
and other Democrats from California were pushing for the 
constitutional amendment at the Democratic convention. 

Teale: No. And actually, you had the legislators, who were almost 
isolated, pushing for a federal constitutional amendment to 
preserve our right to have a federal type representation. And 
then you had the people, particularly the people around the Bay 
Area and Los Angeles, who figured 

Rowland: And people involved in CDC? 

Teale: Involved in CDC, who felt that reapportionment was the only answer 
to their political woes. Well, hell, reapportionment didn t solve 
any of them, but they thought they were going to solve all their 
political problems. 

Rowland: Do you see this as a further widening of the CDC from the Democratic 
central committee? 



Rowland : 





Rowland : 




Right at the moment it was, but as soon as we got reapportionment, 
that disappeared, because the central commttte then became 
synonymous with the new districts. See, they were selected by 
districts. For a little period of time, there was a little trouble 
there, yes. 

So now we come to your bill, which was senate bill 6. 
the whole package that came out of your committee? 

Was that 

That s all that came out of the committee, and that really wasn t 
the work of the committee: the committee would come in once in 
a whle when I called meetings, and the committee members would 
say, "How are you doing?" I d say, "Well, we re doing so and so," 
and they d say, "Don t bother us with the details. Just keep 
going.", you know. The committee in general left it up to me. 
And so I got a bunch of maps and overlays, and I got all the 
census material, and a couple of men, and we sat down and re- 
districted the state together. 

Now, why did the assembly reject SB6? Why did Unruh and Allen 
reject it? 

Well, they eventually took it. 

They eventually took it? 


After the California Supreme Court stepped in? 


Didn t Unruh and Allen, Allen particularly, reject Tom Rees stepping 
in and amending your bill to have at large elections in L.A. 
County versus district elections? 

Yes, Senator Rees wanted to have at o.arge elections and Unruh 
wanted to have district elections. I guess maybe they did reject 
it once. But we put it back together. I d have to look at the 
legislative history; it s been so long. But Unruh and Allen 
eventually [Rowland turns off tape recorder] 

We couldn t come to any conclusion in the senate about what 
to do with L.A. So, we put together an at large election, for 
just fifteen or sixteen senators in L.A. County, and sent the bill 
over to the assembly. 


Rowland: What was the position of the oil lobbyists on reapportionment? 
Teale: I don t remember any lobbyist ever expressing an opinion on it. 

Rowland: We have a note in our office that George Miller disapproved of 
reapportionment because he had the backing of the Standard Oil 
lobby in Contra Costa County. Standard Oil displayed billboards 
in every Chevron station, which called for the voter to defeat 
the Bonelli initiative, therby rejecting senate reapportionment. 

Teale: Well, I think George was in the same position as everybody else. 
None of us like the Bonelli initiative. When you took a body of 
forty men and presented them a bill that got rid of twenty-two 
of them, you wouldn t get a hell of a lot of support for it. 
George didn t like it; I didn t like it. I felt reapportionment 
was going to be the ruination of the senate, because it was going 
to change the character of people who served there. And time 
proved that reapportionment did change the character a great deal. 

But I don t think that I think it was the other way around. 
I think George Miller prevailed upon the lobbyist for Standard 
Oil, who he had known since he was six or seven years old, to 
swing their weight behind opposition to the Bonelli amendment. 
I don t think that the oil companies cared one way or another on 
reapportionment. We worked on the lobbyists more than the 
lobbyists worked on us, to try to get people to maintain the 
status quo. The lobbyists were just like anybody else; they were 
comfortable with what they had gotten. When they had learned to 
live with something, and they were very comfortable with it. They 
didn t like to see anybody change it. 

Rowland: Well, going back to Senator Vern Sturgeon s bill 

Teale: Well, Vern Sturgeon wanted to amend the bill so that he would have 
a safe district. He was going to be in competition with Senators 
Fred Farr and Don Grunsky under reapportionment. 

Rowland: Sturgeon was from San Luis Obispo? 

Teale: San Luis Obispo County, Paso Robles. The only way he could amend 
that bill was to screw up my district. 

So, the night before, I saw him in the hall, and I said, 
"Vern, how would you like a nice home-cooked meal?" "Great!" 
he said. I said, "I ll spring for it." I put him in my car, and 
I drove up here. We had dinner here at home, a nice home- cooked 
meal. I said, "You re going to have to share my bed with me." 
(I wasn t married at the time.) I had a king-size bed, so he shared 


Rowland : 
Teale : 


one half of it, and I shared the other half. The next morning 
I took him to Sacramento and when we arrived he didn t have any 
time to work on his amendments. 1 called the vote on it, and his 
amendments lost. He says, "Boy, talk about being screwed by a 
politician!" He says, "I ve had it!" [Rowland laughs] He says, 
"I ll never take another invitation for a home-cooked meal again." 

Boy, you were sly in those days! 

Oh, I ve been devious all my life. [Rowland laughs] 
have much difficulty with that bill. 

We didn t 

If you read about it in the newspapers, you d think there 
was a lot more going on than there actually was. I guess it was 
because nobody was talking. I wouldn t talk. The minute I started 
talking about anything, why then, I d alert some districts who 
didn t like what they were going to get, and they d get a lot of 
pressure on their man, and that just caused more troubles for most 
of the representatives in that district, and for myself. The other 
legislators weren t talking; Brown didn t know anything on 
reapportionment to talk about. Unruh, all he knew was L.A. County, 
and he didn t want to start any trouble. So there was no talking 
going on, and the newspaper guys had to have some copy all the time. 

California Supreme Court Decision: A Two-Way Street 

Rowland: Wasn t there kind of a strange twist of events when the California 
Supreme Court stepped in and they ordered senate and assembly 
reapportionment, which forced kind of a two-way street agreement 
between Burns and Unruh? 

Teale: Yes, yes. The assembly had reapportioned in 1960, I think, and 
they were out of line, numerically. That s when the California 
Supreme Court told them they had to do it. So, that got them off 
our backs. And other than letting Unruh draw the broad boundaries 
of the senate districts, which nobody in the senate even knew how 
to do even Rees didn t know how to do that he became consumed 
with trying to reapportion his own districts. 

Rowland: How was that agreement reached? Were you privy to that? 

Teale: Oh, Burns and Unruh sat down in Burns office and talked about 

it. We came to the conclusion that Unruh had enough to do to take 
care of his problems, and we had enough to do to take care of our 
problems. It was as simple as that, yes. 


Rowland: And if you don t pass ours, we won t pass yours 
Teale: Well, we knew we had to pass them. 
Rowland : Yes . 

Teale: And after we got the work done, and I have to say that the maps 
that we worked out in August on that trip that Sullivan and I 
worked out, were very, very close to what we finally came up with. 
It was a very simple thing. There just isn t any way to jiggle 
districts around to satisfy any one individual, particularly 
when he lives in the middle. You have to start at the edge; you 
have to start at the edges and the corners, and work in, like that. 
And you simply take the total population and divide it by forty, 
and that told you how many you had to have. 

You d build a district here that had that many, and eventually 
you got down to where you had your big population centers, and then 
you could divide them up equally. That s how it worked out. It 
took us two or three months to really come to that conclusion that 
that was the way you had to work. Because we d start here, we d 
start someplace else, we d start doing exercises saying that we 
had to save Burns, or we had to save the guy in Bakers field, or 
we had to save the guy in El Centre . 

And soon you came to the conclusion: you can t do it. And 
you can t influence you really couldn t influence the party split, 
either. It just came out that your party split would remain 
almost the same. You d just have different faces. Once we worked 
that out, there were very few changes in that bill, except there s 
a little minor adjustment to the corner of the line to take care 
of population shifts that hadn t shown in the 60 census, that 
showed up on later censuses, the special censuses. Once we got 
them worked out, we just simply put the thing on ice, and sat 
there, month after month after month, until the guys adjusted 
themselves to the idea that they were going to have to vote for 
it. Those senators who were going to run for cover someplace 
made their little deals with the governor or with whoever, 
wherever they were going to run to. I didn t know until about 
two days before we called a vote that we were going to call a vote. 

Rowland: Now, if a researcher was going to go back and study turning points, 
major turning points within the reapportionment battle, what would 
you see as some of the major turning points? 

Teale: I guess one of the major turning points was that summer of 64, 
when we began to get all the federal decisions. That was when 
the legislators finally began to understand they were going to 
have to do it. 


Teale: Another major turning point came in the summer of 65, when we 
finally figured out what to do with the Bay, San Francisco area, 
and when we reached an agreement what to do with L.A. 

Rowland: This was the summer of 65, after the California Supreme Court 

Teale: I m not sure; I can t remember. But it was in the 

Rowland: You did meet that deadline for July of 65, but you had an exten 
sion of that deadline by the L.A. District Court. And then the 
California Supreme Court stepped in, and made the assembly and 
senate reapportion. Is that another turning point that you can 

Teale: Oh, it s possible. I can t remember. I ve got a very unfortunate 
habit; when a job s finished, I just put it out of my mind. I 
throw all the papers away, and reports, and forget about it. 

Rowland: So, now we come up to Brown s signature of, well I guess it 
became AB1, which was the senate and the assembly bills put 

Teale: Yes. 

Rowland: Brown signs it in October of 65. And now you re facing a new 
senatorial district which had how many seven counties? 

Teale: Twelve. 

Rowland: What were your relationships with Governor Brown s staff, and 
your relationship with Governor Brown personally? 

Teale: Oh, happy. I was able to call him a fink periodically without 
him getting too mad. I called him a fink one time when we were 
fighting about the water plan. I went down there, and I got him 
I was chairman of the water committee then, and I got him to agree 
on a solution to one of the real knotty problems. 

And before I got back upstairs, he d issued a press release 
that he had reversed his field, reversed his promise to me. And 
I says, "That God-damn fink!" One of the reporters says, "What s 
your definition of a fink?" And I said, "It s a son of a bitch 
that double-crosses his friends!" They printed it. Brown got 
pushed out of shape something awful. He says, "I didn t suspect 
you d ever call me that, Steve!" He says, "That s uncalled for!" 
I says, "The hell it is." I said, "You re a fink." And we 
settled at that, and in about three days, we were back friendly 
again. So, it was kind of a strong relationship, but always friendly. 


Teale: Those were the years when three or four of us senators used to 

meet with him for breakfast once a week to give him advice: Miller. 
Burns, myself and sometimes one or another guy impressed with him. 
He was a funny guy; he d ask our advice, and then he d end up 
saying, "Well, why are you fellows mad at me? Why are you always 
against me?" You know we weren t; we were just trying to tell 
him what we thought was the best solution to his problems. So, 
I never did really have much trouble with Pat Brown; it was a 
friendly but adversarial relationship. I think we had a lot of 
mutual respect for each other. We always had. 

The relationship between him and Unruh wasn t as friendly. 
It was a bitter relationship, most of the time, because Unruh 
wanted to run everything, including the governor s office. The 
senate had a different attitude toward it. We figured the 
governor s office was his responsibility, and ours was upstairs 
in the senate offices. If he asked for advice, we d give it, 
and if he took it, fine, and if he didn t, that was fine, too. 

Rowland: Did you support Pat Brown s campaign in 1966? 

Teale: Yes. But I d supported every Democratic candidate for governor. 
Richard Graves; he was the first one I supported. I supported 
Brown, and 

Rowland: So you didn t feel particularly threatened by the reapportionment 

Teale: Well, I started campaigning in this mountain area as far south as 
Madera and eastern Fresno County in late 1964. 

Rowland: In kind of second-hand knowledge that you knew that reapportion 

Teale: I knew it was going to happen and I knew it was going to happen in 
this general area. So I started working on it real early, and 
carried some key legislation in 64 and 65 and early 66 that 
at least gave me a good name recognition throughout the whole 
of northern California. So, I was threatened by reapportionment, 
sure. Hell, I only won that first that 66 election by about 
three or four thousand votes out of almost half a million voters, 
half a million people; I don t remember the total votes. It was 
a tight election. I won it by one per cent. 

Rowland: This was against Begovich? 

Teale: No, no. I had to beat Begovich in the primary. I beat him about 
two to one. But it was against a guy named Dick Lyng, out of 
Modesto, and he was an excellent candidate. 


Rowland: So your campign with Begovich was in the primary and you got away 
with that pretty well in good shape. 

Teale: Yes. 

Rowland: And that was probably due to your support of Pat Brown. 

Teale : No . 

Rowland: Your reapportionment 

Teale: No, I think it was more on the basis of other legislation that 
I d carried for the district. Although I supported Pat Brown, 
I never tried to ride on anybody s coat tails. Another guy s 
coattails get damn short, and you re apt to slip off. And I 
never had the feeling that I was able to do them much good, either. 
You do the campaign workers more good than you do the candidate. 
Every campaign worker seems to feel that he has to have somebody 
supporting him. I guess it s a sense of insecurity they have. 
I always ran a real tight campaign; I ran it with one or two people, 
did most of it myself, did an awful lot of traveling, and personal 

Rowland: So you mada visits to clubs and organizations to small Democratic 
groups any group you "could. 

Teale: Oh, yes. Yes. Anybody. And I married Shirley in 66 

Rowland: Up here in the foothill counties, I kind of see the Abe Lincoln 
type of stumping as effective. 

Teale: Shirley and I got married in July of 66. I d just gotten over 
winning the primary. I had run up and down the God damned state 
on that. After that, Shirley and I took off and spent about, 
almost three months, just traveling. I found out when every 
Lion s Club, every Rotary Club, every Kiwanis Club, and all the 
community clubs met; hell, if there were ten people in a group, 
I made it a point to go to the meeting and take her with me. At 
that time, not very many women ever went to a Lion s, Kiwanis, 
or Rotary Club meeting. I d go to a place like Royalton, and I d 
tell the president, "I ve got my wife with me and I don t intend 
to send her down the street to a dirty spoon to eat. Do you mind 
if I bring her with me?" That did two things: it kept the 
meetings cleaned up without so much ribald humor and it kept them 
occupied looking at her while I was talking. The/ didn t pay a 
hell of a lot of attention to what I was saying, out the total 
impression was satisfactory. 


Rowland: Who was your opposition, again, in November of 66? 

Teale: Lyng. Dick [Richard E. ] Lyng. L-y-n-g. He later became 

Assistant Secretary of Agriculture of the United States. He was 
out of Modesto. He was out director of agriculture here in the 
state for about a year and a half under Reagan. He was extremely 
intelligent, presented himself well, but forgot the campaign in 
his own neighborhood. That s where I beat him. 

Rowland: So then, the Pat Brown connection wasn t really important to your 
November campaign. 

Teale: It wasn t important to me, no. It was the campaign that we ran. 

Although some guys, some of the legislators, stayed pretty 
well clear .of Pat. They had a fear that being mixed up in another 
man s campaign gives you nothing but trouble. While I never 
figured it did me any harm, at the same time, it didn t do me 
much good. So I never depended on the other man s campaign to 
carry me. But I didn t shun other campaigns because of the fact 
that it wasn t my campaign. 

Rowland: So you went right in the legislature and you finished up in what 


Teale: I finished in January of 73, yes. 

Rowland: You resigned? 

Teale: Quit. Didn t run. Retired. I got tired and retired. 

Rowland: [laughs] Oh, when you said retired, I just recalled, there was 
another big question. 

Retirement Benefits and Reapportionment 

Teale: Yes. What the hell happened to Don Allen and his retirement bene 

*See Don Allen interview in this volume, containing further 
views on Assemblyman Allen s retirement benefits amendment. 


Rowland: Yes. How did that happen anyway? 

Teale: The senate wanted me to put a very juicy retirement provision in 
the [reapportionment] bill. I actually prepared it but I didn t 
ever even need to run it because Don Allen picked up the provisions 
and amended them into AB 1 [the final reapportionment bill] which 
was the vehicle we were using. He was chairman of the reapportion 
ment committee in the assembly. He picked it up and put it in the 

Rowland: Getting back now: now why did senators that were obviously going 
to lose their seats, because of reapportionment, want bigger 
retirement benefits? 

Teale: To get retirement benefits of any kind at that time, you had to 
serve fifteen years. According to retirement provision if you d 
served twenty years, you could retire at any age and start drawing 
benefits. That was a fact of life and it s still a fact of life. 
It s the provision I retired under. But, for that one election, 
we put a provision in that anybody who lost their seat because of 
reapportionment could draw their pro-rated share of retirement, 
starting right then. So you had some guys with four and six and 
eight years who were able to draw up to forty or fifty percent of 
their salary, which wasn t very big, then. Hell, the salary was 
only five hundred a month. You take a guy with eight years of 
experience; he drew forty percent of that salary. Don Allen put 
that provision as an amendment in the reapportionment bill. 
Somebody got on Pat Brown, and he vetoed it, the entire bill. 

Rowland: How did Allen get involved in that? 

Teale: Well, he was simply chairman of the Assembly Elections and 

Reapportionment Committee, and some of the guys asked him to put 
it in, and he d got lots of gall, and he simply stuck the 
amendment in on the assembly side, and voted it through. 

Rowland: But he wouldn t gain anything, would he? 

Teale: He could have, yes. Because it applied to any member of the 

legislature who lost, see. Lost at a reapportionment election. 

Rowland: What district is Allen from? 

Teale: Oh, Don was from L.A., someplace. Brown vetoed it and then even 
tually we got it through. I don t remember all the maneuvering 
that went I think it went! through on a reapportionment cleanup 
bill. But anyway, Don Allen took the blame for it. 

I was the guy that originally worked it out. I couldn t get 


Teale: my committee to approve it, so I just left it out. And Don stuck 
it in over on the assembly side. 

Rowland: And did he assume that Brown was going to okay it? 

Teale: Yes. Pat Brown told him he would okay it, and then he didn t. 
As I remember it. You d have to talk to Don to be sure, but as 
I remember it, Brown agreed to pass it, and then the heat came on. 

Rowland: Heat from where? 

Teale: Oh, press, and a few public-spirited citizens, like the League of 

Women Voters and so forth. I can t remember all who were involved. 
But there was a lot of heat about it, a lot of editorializing. 
Pat vetoed it. And then eventually, it went through. I don t 
think quite as rich as Don would have liked it, but 
[turns off tape recorder] 

You ve got a total of ten men who are currently drawing 
pensions that they got by virtue of the provisions of the 
reapportionment bill. Do you want the names of them? 

Rowland: Okay. 

Teale: [Stanley] Arnold, iJohnJ Begovich, [Paul] Cunardi, [Virgil] Sullivan, 
Stan Pittman, Ed Regan, Harold [T. } Sedgwick, Jack Slattery, 
Bill Symons [Jr.], and Al [Alvin] Weingand. He was from Santa 

Rowland: These are all the senators who lost their seats? 

Teale: Yes. There was one assemblyman who lost his seat that year, who 
draws a pension, Gordon Winton. He was reapportioned out by 
Unruh, out of the assembly, because he was a free-thinker. Pretty 
bright guy, too. 

Rowland: Gordon Winton was a free- thinking Demo who didn t support 

Teale: In fact, he ran against Unruh for Speaker, one year. And that kind 
of put him on the outs. 

Rowland: Anything else that you think we should have talked about that we 


didn t cover? 

No, I don t think so. 


Teale: I think the most important thing to consider is that reapportion- 
ment wasn t nearly as traumatic as the press made it out to be. 
It was a traumatic experience, but most of the guys survived it 
pretty well. There was a certain number that just had to accept 
the fact they weren t going to be in the legislature anymore. 
Some of them never did accept in very well. The odd thing: a 
guy who comes and gets into the legislature, seems to feel that 
he has a vested interest in it. But it was just a process; we 
put it together and then just sat until the guys were ready. That 
took about eighteen months to get reapportionment worked out to 
where they enough people voted for it to get it passed. 

Rowland: Now how about the relations with the houses, between both houses 

and the governor s office after reapportionment? Did that change? 

Teale: Yes. The first thing that changed, it seemed to me, was that 

about eighteen of the twenty- two new members of the senate were 
ex-assemblymen. Naturally, a bunch of them were hand-picked to 
run for the senate. 

And it even had a different atmosphere in the senate, after 
these guys came from the assembly. Prior to reapportionment, the 
senate was a pretty independent body, and they did their own work, 
you know. They didn t have a whole lot of hired help. The guys 
liked to do the work themselves, and they didn t want a bunch of 
bright young men around telling them what to do. They were more 
the elder statesmen type that acted as a leveling influence on 
i the trash that used to come to us from the assembly. 

The minute the assemblymen came over, you began to see a 
broadening of the personal services. It was after reapportionment, 
it was the first time we ever had anybody that came in and 
demanded a sergeant-at-arms take their damn laundry up to the 
corner and then go get it again. The car situation came in after 

Rowland: The state car. 

Teale: Yes, the state car. They demanded a lot of personal services. 
They demanded a lot of hired help that never existed before in 
the senate. It was a great thing to get a committee and then have 
two or three hired help, who, in actuality, were nothing but 
personal flunkies. They tend to hire some kid and pay him twice 
what the senator got paid. Maybe they re bright enough, but 
there s an awful lot of them didn t have any political background. 
They didn t have any understanding of the political process. 

The assembly had a different attitude toward presentation 
of bills. They used to send their hired help to present bills, 


Teale: and if you asked one of the assemblymen to present it, the 

assemblymen would chew off and didn t even know what they were 
trying to present. Prior to the reapportionment , I d never 
seen a staff man try to present a senate bill before a committee. 
Members did it. I think it detracts a great deal, detracted a 
great deal from the quality of work that the men did. They began 
to get sloppier, they didn t inform themselves as much. They did 
poorer work. 

Rowland: Wouldn t there be a closer communication between senate and assembly 
after reapportionment? 

Teale: Yes. The minute former assemblymen got over to the senate, they 
developed a personality all their own. They wanted to develop a 
second assembly. They didn t want to work with the people who 
were left on the assembly side. They wanted to convert the 
senate into the same kind of a house, but independent of the 

Rowland: So the result of reapportionment in regarding the relations between 

Teale: Didn t help any. Or didn t change the relationship a great deal. 
It was more of an internal change in the senate that those of us 
who had been there before noticed. And I must say that the older 
members that survivied the reapportionment, were not very, happy 
about the way the thing worked out. They were very disgusted and 
disappointed with some of the things that some of the newer members 
had done. It may have been that those changes would have taken 
place in any event, whether there had been a reapportionment or 
not. I don t know. 

But prior to that, we d worked on a basis of seniority, the 
theory being that .you had to learn something by being there. It 
had to improve your ability, just by living and being in the atmo 

Rowland: So the seniority system changed because of the reapportionment? 

Teale: Sure. The first one changed was that the Senate Finance Committee 
no longer was based strictly on seniority. It took me about nine 
years to get on the finance committee. I went on the finance 
committee in 60 or 61. I had to stay there until I got in line. 
Once I got in line, I had my choice. I could go on it, or I could 
stay off of it. But I had to wait until my number rose up high 
enough so that I qualified from a seniority standpoint. Immediately 
after reapportionment, we put freshman on it, new legislators on 
it, simply because they were from southern California. 


Rowland: What about relations between the governor s office and the senate? 
Teale: I don t think they were changed. 
Rowland: Well, this was a new governor, too. 

Teale: Well, the actor changed. Brown had basically Democrats with a 

scattering of Republican senators advising him, with free access 
to the governor s office downstairs from the senate. The 
Republicans were those who were chairmen of important committees. 

Rowland: Like Jack McCarthy. 

Teale: Yes, Jack, and Dolwig, and some of the others. When Reagan went 

in, it strictly became a Republican operation. The only Democrat 
that could go down there was Hugh Burns , and he wasn t very 
popular with Reagan. 

Rowland: With Reagan. I assumed that Burns and Reagan got along well 
because Reagan finally turned around and fired Clark Kerr as 
President of the University of California. That was Burns 
ambition for quite awhile. 

Teale: Well, Reagan and Burns had a lot of the same philosophies. You 
see, Reagan was a Democrat back in the thirties, about the same 
time that Burns got started. So, they had basically the same 

Rowland: I think Reagan was a socialist Democrat in those days. 

Teale: Yes, and he lived long enough to become a very conservative 

Rowland: Yes. Not a radical conservative. 

Teale: No, he s conservative conservative. I guess he s well, I won t 
say it. 

Rowland: You can turn it off and say it. [he laughs] 

So the effects of reapportionment , although they caused some 
in-house changes, were not all the dramatic to relations between 
both houses. 

Teale: No. The relationship between the houses and the relationship 

between the two houses and governor s office, continues on about 
the same there were some minor changes. 


Teale: I would say the basic change that came from reapportionment was 
the internal change in the senate. It became more like the 
assembly. Prior to that time, it had been a two house operation 
in which there was a very distinct difference between the houses. 
That difference paled out a lot in the first two or three years 
after reapportionment. You didn t have as effective a leadership 
in the senate after reapportionment. . You got more partisanship, 
you got a development of a Democratic caucus, which you d never 
seen before. 

Rowland: After reapportionment. 

Teale: After reapportionment, yes. When the assemblymen came over, they 
insisted on having a party caucus. The general view in the senate 
was, that the caucus might be satisfactory, but it really didn t 
serve much purpose except to give the caucus chairman some dog 
robbers, and I still feel that way about it. Hell, the general 
rank and file Democrat in the senate never saw anything come out 
of the caucus that helped him any. 

Rowland : Yes . 

Teale: There was a little stuff went out to the press, but it didn t 
necessarily represent what the Democrats as a whole were doing. 

Rowland; And there was the eventual challenge of Hugh Burns position 

when he retired. Was there a challenge to Hugh Burns as pro tern? 

Teale: Oh, yes. 

Rowland: He had to renew it every two years, right? 

Teale: Yes, he had to renew it every two years. Finally, he lost enough 
friends that well, we lost Democrats. He finally lost when we 
got down below twenty Democrats. 

Rowland: In the 68 election? 

Teale: It must have been 68. It was when Reagan came in, and that s 
when Howard Way took over as senate pro tern. 

Rowland: Yes. Way took over in 70, when Hugh retired. 

Teale: No, Hugh didn t retire until Hughie was out prior to the time he 
retired as pro tern. We got Way, and then we turned around and 
put Schrade in. And then Hugh retired the next election. I guess 
he retired at the 70 election. It must have been about 68, 
when Reagan came in. When did Reagan come in? 66? 


Rowland: He won the 66 election. He entered office in January of 67. 

Teale: 67. Well, it was about mid-year that Way took over. He only 
lasted about six months. Then they put Schrade in, and after 
Schrade it was Jim Mills, I guess. 

Rowland: There s something peculiar about Hugh as a Democratic leader in 
the senate, and Unruh as the Democratic leader in the assembly, 
with Pat Brown as the Democratic governor. It appears, maybe, 
that there was a general agreement between Hugh and Pat Brown on 
Democratic policy, but that Unruh played the odd man out. 

Teale: Well, Hughie could always be depended upon to support the 

Democratic position, when the thing got right down to the final 

Brown was very smart when he maneuvered and got Hughie to 
run the water bill, finally, for him. 

The senate water committee, in general, put together the 
provision of the water bill. Desmond was chairman of it, and then 
I took over after Desmond left. But neither one of us carried a 
bill. Burns carried the bill for Brown, and we kept amending it, 
and finally got it into shape so that it would pass. But Burns 
put his name and Assemblyman Porter s name on the bill, which was 
called the Burns-Porter Act. Generally, something that Brown 
wanted that wasn t out of line or didn t conflict with Burns 
un-american activities quirk, you could depend on him to help 
push it through the senate. 

But Unruh was a spoiler. 

Rowland: Both Burns and Unruh stood up against the FSM activities at 

Berkeley in 1964. They called for a joint legislative committee 
to investigate the university s state constitutional autonomy. 
Was Unruh just politically outraged by this, or was there some 

Teale: No, hell no. Unruh wanted to get the autonomy away from the 
University of California. 

Rowland: He just wanted the autonomy gone? 

Teale: Yes. He wanted to be able to dictate the policies of the 

university. See, Unruh was an ex oficio regent of the university. 
But Burns never was. Burns was outraged by the Free Speech 
Movement. I don t think that Unruh cared one whit one way or the 
other whether the free speech was a factor or not. He d like to 


Teale: get his fingers into the administration of the university. Or at 
least that s the way it looked to me. 

Rowland: Whatever became of that? Was there ever a joint legislative 
committee to investigate UC autonomy? 

Telae: Hell; I don t know whether it came out of that particular thing or 
not. But somebody was always investigating the university. I 
really couldn t be bothered with that. There were a lot more 
important things going on. 

Rowland: Going back to the un-american activities committee, you didn t sign 
the committee s 65 report, and we went all through that in a 
previous interview. But you signed that 66 supplementary report 
of the committee, and you said that you had cleaned up the pages, 
and did a whole bunch or rewriting of Combs drafts and all of 

Telae: That was probably a mistake to sign that, too. 

Rowland: Yes. In talking to Kerr, he said that you later regretted signing 
that one, too. 

Teale: Because after we got through rewriting it, they shuffled all the 
original stuff back in. 

Rowland: They did. Combs did? 
Teale : Yes . 

Rowland: You weren t aware of any other staff members working under like 
Rena Vale, or another one named Piet van Rijn, or whatever. 

Teale: Oh, I knew he had some hired help, but I didn t know who they were. 
We never saw them. 

Rowland: Mary Ellen Leary had an interview with Mr. Combs at his cabin in 
Three Rivers, California. She spent three days up there having 
dinner with his family, and interviewing him extensively. She 
discovered that he has this kind of almost FBI-type operation 
out of his cabin with agents all over the state sending him coded 
letters through secret mail droppings . 

Teale: Oh, yes. A very odd thing. You know, members of the committee 
couldn t get into the files. I never could. 

Rowland: You told me that, yes. 


Teale: But my wife s first cousin, who lives in Stockton, was an 

immigration agent. He had freedom of those files any day he 
wanted. He d go down to Fresno, and get into them, and pull 
material out of them. 

Rowland: There s a little interesting kind of footnote to the file material. 
Perhaps you recall in 1962 when Stanley Mosk seized the files of 
what was called the San Diego Research Library, on claims that 
both Earl Warren, Goodwin Knight, and Pat Brown were using the 
files to check the backgrounds of potential appointees, and that 
the private files from this "San Diego Research Library" were 
actually state material. Allegedly, the Attorney General s 
office had sent state trucks down late at night, dumped the files 
into the state truck and brought them up to Sacramento. The San 
Diego group threatened a lawsuit , and Moss gave up and gave them 
back to San Diego Research Library, where they were thrown into 
a vault. Do you recall any background to that? I haven t been 
able to dig up any more information on that. 

Teale: No, 1 really don t. 

Rowland: Was Hugo Fisher involved in that whole thing? 

Teale: Yes. Hugo was in those files. 

Rowland: His name was on those files? 

Teale: In fact, everybody was in those damn files. 

Rowland: Well, those files were originally the product of a Ralph Van Dieman, 
who was the founder of U.S. military intelligence at the beginning 
of World War I. He retired from the Army in 1929 and started 
working on those files in his home in San Diego. By 1952, when 
he died, he had accumulated about two hundred fifty thousand names 
of alleged subversives on a personal name card index. When he 
died, a group of members of the California National Guard were 
benefactors of the files and formed the "San Diego Research Library" 
which offered the files to state agencies. According to the 
New York Times , Earl Warren, Goodwin Knight, and Pat Brown had 
access to those files to check the background of appointees. You 
don t know any more information? 

Teale: No. No, all I know is that I wasn t supposed to be in it. 
Towland: You had a good record. 

Teale: I always played pretty close to my chest and never did much 

talking. George Miller was in them, and Bert Coffey. And then, 


Teale: Hughie finally decided in oh, 65 or 66 that the files ought 

to be closed. He transferred all his un-american activities files 
over to the state archives and locked them up. 

Rowland: In 65- 66. 

Teale: Somewhere back in there, yes. 

Rowland: After the whole controversy of the free speech reports of 65- 66? 

Teale: Yes. Hughie decided that maybe they weren t so valuable after all. 
He kind of got caught with old man Combs , and he had him on the 
payroll for so long, he didn t know quite what to do with him. 
But by the time Hughie left the senate, he d thoroughly lost his 
enthusiasm for the un-american activities committee. He just 
didn t want anybody to bother him with it. 

Rowland: Yes. It seems that maybe we should turn this off. 
[Interview II: 27 September, 1978]## 

Teale: there were three or four guys including [George] Miller. I can t 
remember the others; they interviewed us back in 1953. George told 
me later, he says, "You know," he says, "I was really for that 
sheepherder.." But he said, "The other guys liked you," he says, 
"so they wanted you." Well, the sheepherder was John Garamandi s 
father. Ray Garamandi. He didn t run, but he was in the running 
for the nomination he wanted to run. And then he decided to back 
off when he didn t get the support of the official [Democratic] 

Rowland: Why was Clyde Sherwood so popular in that special senatorial race 
back in 1953 in the twenty-sixth district? 

Teale: He wasn t. 

Rowland: He had the support of the Calaveras Prospect ; he had a radio spot 
during the election 

Teale: I know. He had been chairman of the Alameda County central 

committee at one time, andhe spent a lot of money. He had a lot 
of money, and he spent a lot of money to become known. 

Rowland: Prior to the race he kind of worked his way around with contacts? 

Teale: Yes, he was organizing. He was pretty well known in the county; 
I_ was pretty well known. I was a county supervisor. So, we just 
slugged it out. 


Rowland: What other papers endorsed you? The only one I was able to find 
was the Calaveras Prospect. We looked in San Andreas 

Teale: That s the only paper that was here: the Prospect. The Tuolomne 
paper endorsed Rue, and the Mariposa paper endorsed Bob Curran. 

Rowland: You mentioned that you had Pierre Salinger up here working on the 

Teale: Yes. 

Rowland: This was after Miller, Bradley, Kent 

Teale: Yes. Miller and Kent made the decision 

Rowland: Made the decision about wanting to put their money in support for 

Teale : Yes . 

Rowland: Do you think you would have won that election if they hadn t 
supported you? 

Teale: Sure, I got seventeen hundred votes out of this supervisorial 
district. And I only had to pick up four hundred around the 
rest of the district, of three counties. I did a couple of things 
that the other guys forgot about: I worked the absentees, and I 
worked the county hospitals. And that was good for one hundred, 
or one hundred and fifty votes. On election day, Vern Rue should 
have won that election. But he forgot about hauling people into 
the polls, and he didn t do a darn thing except sit on his dead 
duff over there, and wait for the returns, and I had people in 
every place I knew that I had a little bit of strength. I gave 
somebody five gallons of gas, and got them to haul people to the 
polls, go out and get them. And of course, they went to get my 
friends. Hell, I only had forty-nine good votes, when the day 
was over. 

Rowland: When you win like that, you really need all the pull and push you 
can get! [he laughs] 

Teale: Yes. But it was paying attention to the little tiny detail that 
made the election possible. 

Rowland: Who ran out and got your endorsements for that election? 

Teale: I did. 

Rowland: Did anyone go out and try to get you newspaper support? 


Teale: No, we just I just kind of played it by ear. I had one worker; 
she was treasurer and chairman and the whole works, an unpaid 
worker. And other than that, I just picked up a little support 
here and a little support there 

Rowland: Do you recall her name? 

Teale: Yes. Her name was Peggy Campbell. 

Rowland : Campbell . 

Teale: Yes. She lives over in Sacramento now. She d worked for me in 
the office as a secretary, and I just got her to handle all the 
money and pay the bills, keep books. 

Rowland: Did she work for you when you were supervisor for the county? 

Teale: No. She was the first secretary that I had when I went up to the 
county as a doctor. 

Rowland: Oh, I see; during your practice. Did you see Sherwood as your 
principal opponent in that campaign? 

Teale: No. Vern Rue. Sherwood was the only other person besides myself- 
/ who put on a campaign. It only .lasted six weeks, and he worked 
day and night. He was travelling all over the district, and in 
those days, you had to travel forty miles to find a voter. 

I used to work the office until three o clock in the after 
noon, and then start out. If I worked until three, I could make 
it to Mariposa in time for an evening meeting, and then travel 
all night to get back. But I had to work the office, because the 
word was out that if I got elected, I d shut the office up, the 
doctor s office in West Point. So, it was necessary to keep 
that office open. 

Rowland: Right. I remember you said that in your campaign advertisement, 
the day before the election, in the Calaveras Prospect. You 
mentioned that you would be a part time senator. And you would 
be continuing your practice in West Point. What kind of financing 
did you have? Did you get money from the San Francisco office of 
Bradley, Kent, and Van Dempsey? 

Teale: No, I got some advice from Salinger and from Bradley, and Bradley 
got me in almost as much hot water as he gave me advice. 

Rowland: How come? 



Rowland : 


Rowland ; 

Teale : 



He went down to Mariposa and arranged for a mailing. He arranged 
it with the chairman of the central committee down there, forgot 
to clear it with the rest of the members, and then he put out a 
postcard saying the central committee endorsed me. And he dropped 
it in the mail Sunday night, it hit the mail Monday morning, and 
Monday night the other members of the central committee were 
yelling "foul." They were all supporting Vern Rue, the Republican. 
So after the election, Bradley had to go down there and cool them 
off. They finally decided what the hell, they were in the 
business to support Democrats, and the Democrat got elected. They 
didn t have any beef, so they all went home. [he laughs] But it 
almost got me into trouble with the damn unauthorized postcard. 
Instead of signing it with the guy s name as chairman of the 
commitee, he signed it just, "Democratic central committee" and 
the chairman had never cleared it with the rest of the committee. 

Oh, I see. So you didn t get any financial assistance. The CDC 
just sent Pierre Salinger, who you had never met before? 

I never met him before. I maybe got two or three hundred dollars 
from them. I did the whole thing on about three thousand dollars, 
and about twenty-five hundred of it, as I remember, was my own 
money . 

Now, did they alter this district prior to that election? 
there some reapportionment of the district in 1951? 


No, no. The old districts hadn t been messed with since 38. 
So I had just a three county district: Mariposa, Tuolomne, and 
Calaveras County. But it must have been maybe forty thousand 
people in there, total population. 

Now, another thing I was going to ask about Rue: 
Rue as your principal opponent? 

why did you see 

Well, Rue had been a shadow of Jesse Mayo. Mayo had been a 
Republican- this district had traditionally had Republicans for 
twenty or thirty years in the senate. It was the old non- 
partisan myth that really prevailed up here, it was "Be non- 
partisan: just vote for the Republicans." 

Rowland: "Vote for the man, not the party." 

Teale: Yes. "Vote for the man, not the party, but be sure you vote for 
the Republican," and they never mentioned the fact they were 
Republican. I think in that 53 election, I came out as strictly 
a Democrat, and then Avery More and Sherwood followed me, and 
declared as Democrats. Rue never did declare himself for what he 


Teale: was, but I felt that he was well-known in the district; he had 

been the liquor control officer up here for fiteen years. Worked 
with the board of equalization. So he was well-known. 

Rowland: Now, in Romaggi s campaign he was always saying, that he was not 
supported by special interests or political organizations. Was 
he referring to you, in a sense? Was he pointing that you were 
supported by the Democratic central committee? 

Teale: No. That, I guess, is still part of the myth that candidates try 
to promote when they re not in. 

Rowland: Or was he kind of speaking about Rue or Mayo? 

Teale: Well, Mayo was supported financially by the Pacific Telephone 
Company. He had a little ten cents print shop down in Angel s 
Camp, and he used to print telephone directories by the million. 
I don t say that there was anything wrong with it. I d say that 
he generated business that normally a smalltown print shop wouldn t 
generate. And he was in an ideal situation to go out and get 
that business: he had the contacts. But I suspect Romaggi referred 
as much to Vern Rue as he did to anybody else. 

Rowland: Why Rue? 

Teale: Well, because Rue was the liquor control officer. 

Rowland: And Rue he felt Rue was financed or was being supported by 

Teale: By bars, and yes. But I m not sure he was; I don t think anybody 
was financing anybody very much in that campaign. 

Rowland: Had Mayo s financial campaign support shifted to Rue s campaign? 

Teale: I think so. I can t say for sure, but I think it probably did. 
None of the rest of us had much in the way of support. There 
certainly wasn t much in the way of outside support coming into 
the district that I can see. It certainly didn t come into my 
campaign very heavily. I think I got a hundred dollars from 
one union, and I can t remember who it was. It may have been the 
Machinists or Auto Workers, or somebody 

Rowland: I believe 1953 was the year of McCarthyism and ant i- communism and 
all did that ever come up in your campaign at all? 

Teale: No. No. Not at all. 

Rowland: There was no talk of national politics or anything of that 


Teale: No, no. Not up here; hell, it s a cluster of little tiny counties. 
We had two or three major interests: one was parks and recreation, 
one was fish and game, which didn t amount to a hoot in hell, and 
the other was mining. They had a bunch of old miners who were 
starving to death on thirty-two dollar gold. They wanted a 
state subsidy for gold mining. And you couldn t do much for them 
except be sympathetic. 



Impressions of Caspar Weinberger 

Rowland: Well, I guess maybe we could switch over to that liquor control 

topic. I sent you some clippings from a 1954 master s thesis from 
UC Berkeley on liquor control by Robert Whalen, I believe. He 
talks in there about Paul [R. ] Leake, Warren Olney [III], and the 
Weinberger committee. I think I sent you some questions on the 
Weinberger committee. 

Teale: I came in right at the tail end f the session. I came in on the 
last day of the session, so I don t know anything about the for 
mation. I watched the committee in action, and I watched it all 
the next year very carefully. I was trying to learn; I spent 
a lot of time sitting in committees that I wasn t a member of, 
and one of them that I did watch was Weinberger s and this 
liquor control thing. So I don t know 

Rowland: What were your personal observations about Weinberger? 

Teale: I thought he was pretty brash and pretty naive. Coming down to 
one of your questions here about why weren t all of his 
recommendations passed, there were a couple of things that were 
evident to me; one of them was that the committee didn t belong 
to Weinberger. It belonged to Jim Silliman. He was the assembly 
Speaker. Whenever they had Weinberger s committee hearing, Jim 
would come in, make his point, and then leave, and then Weinberger 
would spend the rest of the time developing the points that 
Silliman wanted to have worked on. Silliman lost out to 
Butch Powers in 54 when they ran for lieutenant governor. 

The other thing that was evident was that Weinberger was 
just as inflexible when he was a kid as he was when he grew up. 
You know, he was a first or second term assemblyman; he was just 
real fresh on the scene. He did very well in the assembly with 


Teale: his recommendations. But when his recommendations got to the 

senate, he came up against a bunch of guys who knew what the score 
was, and who had been there a long, long time, He came up against 
Harry Parkman, who was chairman of the governmental organization 
committee that handled the bill, it came up against guys like 
Hugh Burns, Randy Collier, Clarence Ward, and Ben Hulse. These 
guys all had fifteen or more years experience apiece, then, with 
the exception of George Miller; Miller had about ten or twelve 
years in the legislature, 

I remember very vividly; I was sitting on the governmental 
organization committee when Weinberger came up and presented the 
bill, and Parkman suggested to him that there might be some 
amendments that would be well-taken. And Weinberger s comment 
was, "This bill needs no amendment. I wrote the bill," Well, 
that was the beginning of the end, as far as he was concerned. 
When he got through with that bill, he didn t recognize it, This 
bunch of old gray hairs really took him apart. They amended the 

Role of the Liquor Lobby 

Rowland: The kind of natural question for someone who s studying this 

would be, what was the role of the legislative advocates, that 
is, the liquor lobby in this affair? Did they convince Burns, 
Parkman, etc. to put these amendments on a liquor control bill? 

Teale: I have to assume that they did. If you go back to that period in 
time, lobbyists did most of their work outside of the committee 
room. They worked the individual members of the committee; they 
went to their offices, and they convinced them that something was 
wrong with the bill, and it ought to be changed. So, my memory 
of it, there was very few appearances by the liquor lobbyists 
themselves, and by such fellows as Judge Garibaldi, the pre-r- 
decessor to Dan Creedon, the beer people. They made very few-rr 

Rowland: Samish was in prison at that time. 

Teale: Samish was in prison; Porky Flynn wasn t doing much at that time, 

But they didn t make much appearances at the committee 
hearings, and of course, there s no record of the committee 
hearings. There s no way to check and see who did what, But 
my memory is that the liquor lobbyists made very few appearances 
and made very few points. But the legislators didn t get their 


Teale: amendments out of fresh air. They got them from somebody, and I 
have to assume that some of them came from the liquor people. 
I suppose many of them came from the bar owners and the liquor 
store owners rather than the people who represented the 
distilleries and the breweries, and there is quite a difference 
between the point of view of those two factions. Momma and Poppa 
liquor stores were against the big liquor stores and the big 
liquor stores were against supermarket chains. 

Rowland: Right. That was an issue later on in Pat Brown s administration. 

Teale: Yes. But any way, Weinberger s bill got pretty badly amended, and 
I m not sure that it was all bad, because they were able to get 
a liquor control thing passed that moved the control away from the 
Board of Equalization into alcohol beverage control commission. 
I don t think anybody really objected to that. 

Rowland: Was that due to Paul Leake and Warren Olney s investigations of 
corruption in liquor licensing? 

Teale: No, I don t think so. I think probably Olney and Leake rode the 
wave of popular opinion. They espoused the popular cause. I 
think it was just a general feeling that you had to change the 
setting somewhat and that was the easiest way to set it, to 
change it, was to change the liquor control agency at the top. 
They felt that the Board of Equalization had enough to do to 
worry with taxes and assessments without having to be a control 
agency over liquor. 

Rowland: Did you vote for the amendments that Parkman and these older 
senators introduced? 

Teale: I must have. I wasn t on the committee, but I sat on the 

committee and watched this. Then I had to vote on the bill when 
it came before the senate. 

Rowland: I m interested in the committee, too, in the sense of support, 
in the sense of party support. That s why I asked the question 
did the committee have whole bipartisan support? 

Teale: Well, the committee was Republican at that time. The legislature 
was Republican. It was almost three to one Republican when I went 
there, in both houses. So it wasn t a necessity to have bipartisan 
support, because as far as I can remember, there really wasn t 
much argument about specific things in the bill. I can t 
remember now all the arguments or all the items that were 
controversial. But I can remember that there were arguments, and 
that proponents or opponents weren t confined to one party. It 
was a mixture. 


Rowland : 


Rowland : 

So we have the initiative, then, in 1954. What was the breakdown 
in the legislature over that? Were most legislators, younger 
legislators perhaps, in favor of it, older legislators opposed? 

I can t remember. It s a total blank to me. 
anything about the initiative. 

I can t even remember 

That was the initiative, like we said, which changed liquor licen 
sing from the Board of Equalization to the alcohol beverage control 

Teale: Yes. But it must have had a good majority support to get on the 
ballot. It had to have twenty-seven votes in the senate. 

Rowland: Isn t that a referendum, then, when it goes to the people? 

Teale: Yes. When there s a legislative initiative, as opposed to a 

popular initiative, it takes twenty-seven votes to get it on the 
ballot. There are a few things that require twenty-one, and I d 
have to look up on Mason s Manual of Legislative Procedure to tell 
you what they are. But not very many things got on the ballot 
without a twenty-seven majority. 

Rowland: Were Parkman and Burns, Collier, Ward considered the old guard in 
the senate? 

Teale: Hell, they were all old guard then. [Rowland laughs] Miller and 
I were the new guard, and really, I guess Burns was considered 
a rank newcomer at that time. And he d been there for fifteen 
years then. 

Rowland: But do you remember any split among that group of old guard 

Teale: No, I really don t. No. 

Rowland: Now what about the liquor lobby? Were they running around senate 
halls trying to build up a groundswell of opposition to the liquor 
control initiative? 

The Issue of Fair Trade 

Teale: No, I really don t think so, because through the years, I remember 
that liquor lobby. They were more interested in price control, 
they were more interested in limiting competition and fair trade 


Teale: and that sort of thing. And the liquor establishments were 

interested, of course, in limiting the number of offsale and onsale 
establishments and maintaining the price of the liquor license, 
keeping the license way up there, so it was a thing of value. As 
I remember, the Weinberger thing, although it made some recom 
mendations, it didn t do anything about the number of licenses. 
It didn t liberalize the number of licenses or put it on an open 
market, free competition basis. 

Rowland: I think that was the point that I was mentioning in that thesis 

by Whalen, that there were some major faults with the recommenda 
tions themselves, and they really didn t hit on some key issues, 
such as the massive proliferation of licenses during 1954. I 
remember Paul Leake said at one point there were thirty thousand 
licenses for liquor stores, and only ten thousand licenses for 
pharmacies or grocery stores. There was just a massive 
proliferation of liquor licenses and there was some corruption 
that went along with issuing those licenses. 

Teale: Yes. Well, we set a firm number of licenses per population. I 
think that came along with Brown s administration. That was 
quite a brawl, too. The major thing was that with limitation the 
intrinsic value of a liquor license would grow immensely. I 
believe it was around 1965 that Pat Brown lifted the Fair Trade 
Act, which touched off a battle between the small retailers and 
supermarkets. It lifted the price ceiling on liquor which would 
benefit the supermarkets but would allegedly hurt the small 
retailers. I can t remember much about that battle 

Rowland: You don t recall that? 

Teale: except that the Momma and Poppa stores came in on the side of 
fair trade. And the other guys wanted to get in the cut rate 
business. If you take the fair trade off, that gives the 
supermarkets a free marketplace, and Momma and Poppa stores dry 

Rowland: So then there was the third house activity for the small retailers? 
Teale: Yes, yes. There is a retailers association 

Rowland: retailers association trying to pressure Brown, and pressure 
some probably key legislators to maintain that small fair trade 

Teale: Yes. And they did. 

Rowland: I recall that Brown lifted the Fair Trade Act. 


Teale: I think he wanted to. But I don t remember it s ever being actually 
lifted. Because hell, that s what this recent California Supreme 
Court decision was all about, saying that the Fair Trade Act was 

I only remember one thing: I was sitting in the governmental 
organization committee one time, and Judge Garibaldi came in. He 
represented the distillers, and he was maintaining that it [Fair 
Trade Act] didn t make any difference: 


Teale: his example, White Bear Gin. He proved that by listing the price 
of the label, and the labor that goes to putting the label on the 
bottle, and the price of the bottle, and the price of the cap, and 
the transportation, it came down to where you had three cents worth 
of gin in the bottle, and the total price was two dollars and 
eighty-three cents. So I ve spent the rest of my years looking for 
White Bear Gin, and I now use it to clean my glasses with. [Rowland 

Rowland: Talking about lobbyists, that s a subject that we re trying to get 
a little bit more information on. I don t know if you get the 
California Journal which comes out monthly. The last issue had 
an article in which the legislators rated lobbyists in this period. 

Teale: I didn t see that. 

Rowland: How would you rate lobbyists during your period in the legislature? 

Teale: During my period? 

Rowland: In terms of their qualifications. 

Teale: Most of the lobbyists were, I think, excellent. When I first went 
there, only the more affluent groups, or the larger groups, had 
lobbyists. We had about two hundred and fifty, in 1953 I think 
about that many. They had around six hundred when I left. There 
was a sort of a unwritten understanding between the legislature and 
the lobbyists, that the lobbyist knew that if he ever was caught 
lying, or misrepresenting something, he was done as a lobbyist. 
The word soon got around that he was unreliable. 

So my feeling was that the lobbyists themselves were an ex 
cellent source of information, provided you took that information 
with the understanding that it was slanted toward the guy s point 
of view. He may not lie to you, but his defense was that if you 
didn t ask the question right, he didn t have to answer it in its 
entirety. So unless I understood what I was trying to find out, 


Teale: I might get an erroneous impression from a lobbyist, and he would 
be perfectly honest with me, in answering the question that I 
asked. I hadn t asked the proper question. But my experience 
with these fellows was that I don t think I was ever handed a 
what you would call a mouldy fig, in all the years that I dealt 
with the lobbyists; I used them a great deal as a source of 
information. But I used them by using all of them. If there 
were three lobbyists on three different sides of a question, or 
represented three different opinions of the same question, I was 
very careful to try to talk to all three, and then form an opinion. 

Rowland: Which lobbyists would you rate as who were particularly effective? 
What interests did they represent? 

Teale: Well, one of the guys who was extremely effective was Garibaldi. 
Rowland: And he was representing liquor? 

Teale: Liquor and racetracks. Yes. Pacific Telephone and Telegraph had 

good lobbyists, all the time. P.G. and E. had excellent lobbyists. 
Francis Carr was their lobbyist. I can t recall them all now. 
Some of the labor lobbyists were excellent. Yes. Probably the 
most effective and one of the most ruthless was the guy who 
represented the California Teacher s Association. 

Rowland: Do you recall his name? 

Teale: Sure, I recall his name, but I m not going to tell you. You can 
find out. But he was ruthless in his approach. It was "You do 
as we want you to do, or we ll tell all your teachers, and get 
them to vote against you." He wielded quite a power there, for 
a long time. In fact, that was the only lobbyist that ever 
threatened me. 

Rowland: How did the lobbyist or advocate get you to support an interest 
which conflicted with your own campaign funds and various other 
sources of support? 

Teale: Well, to begin with, I never let my campaign funds influence my 

vote. If you assume that campaign funds come to you because you re 
doing a generally good job, you try to keep on doing that same 
kind of job regardless of who the campaign funds come from. And 
then if a contributor isn t happy with you, he doesn t contribute 
next time. So I never did try to reconcile my actions against 
campaign contributions. And I don t think very many others did 
in those days. I think all lobbyists asked of you was an open 
mind and an opportunity to talk to you. 

Rowland: . I m sure there were different styles of lobbyists. 


Teale: Yes, 

Rowland: To you personally, what would be the most effective style of a 

Teale: I think the most effective lobbyists were the guys who took the 
effort to become well-acquainted, personally acquainted with 
individual members. The did it in a lot of ways. They were in 
evidence practically twenty-four hours a day around the capital. 

In those days of shorter sessions, Sacramento was a pretty 
lonsesome place, and it was nice to have somebody to eat lunch 
with, eat dinner with, maybe play a game of golf with. The good 
lobbyist never lobbied you in a social or a play setting. It was 
a matter of becoming personally acquainted with you, knowing what 
your interests were and whether you had like interests, or common 
interests. If they had something to talk to you about, they came 
to your office to talk to you about if. That was my experience. 
If you made yourself available in your office and were willing to 
talk with them, you could get a lot out of these people. In the 
years I was in office, I didn t have half a dozen guys abuse that 
privilege, abuse the right to talk to you and be friends with you. 
But they didn t encroach on your leisure time. You didn t have 
very much leisure time to begin with. They didn t encroach on 
your leisure time with business. And I used to do a lot of business 
walking from my office to where I was going to go: committees, 
the floor or any other place. If I had two or three lobbyists 
sitting in the office, I d try to get those out of the way that I 
could, and if I couldn t get to them before I was due somplace, 
I would say "Well, all right, you come walk with me, and we ll 
talk about it as we go, because I ve got to go someplace, to a 
committee meeting, or got to go to the floor, or do something of 
that nature." 

Rowland: I m interested in the horse racing lobby. It seems peculiar that 

and horse racing would be a particularly strong lobby in Sacramento, 
rather than oil interests 

Teale: Oil was a big lobby, too, but there was a tremendous amount of 
money in horse racing for the track. You see, they get a split 
of the income right off the top, of parimutuel betting. And 
occasionally, they re looking for a change in that split. They 
don t get it very much and very often, and the change is rather 
minute percentage wise, but when they get a change, it means a 
lot of bucks to them. And also, by the same token, because there 
are a lot of bucks in that parimutuel pool, there are a lot of 
people looking at it for a source of funding. Horse track people 
don t want the crippled children, or somebody else coming in to 
get a chunk of that money. They can have somebody else s part of 


Teale : 

Rowland : 

Rowland : 

Rowland : 

Rowland ; 


the money, but they don t want them to have the track stake of 
the parimutuel pool. And through the years, the horse lobbyists 
didn t have much business to take care of. Maybe their only 
legislative interests would last for about a week. But because 
it was so big an interest, they kept somebody in Sacramento every 
day that the legislature was in session, and that guy was around, 
moving around, and he was busy being friendly, dropping in on 
legislators offices. 

What kind of legislation were they trying to push? 

They weren t trying to push any. They were trying to keep somebody 
from getting their share of the parimutuel money. And there was 
one or two places you get it: you get it in approriation bills, 
and you get it in the budget. If they waited to snoop around 
until budget time, they were apt to wake up and find that the 
budget had been amended to take some money out of the horse track s 
share of parimutuel money, and given to somebody else: education, 
or county fairs. 

County fairs is also a source for horse racing, too, is it not? 

It s a source for horse racing, but county fairs live on horse 
race money. That s the way they got started. The district 
agricultural associations justified the parimutuel betting on 
the fact that they were going to .have a cerain amount set aside 
for county fairs, and a certain amount for education. And that^s 
how they pushed the initiative past the election. People voted 
on it on the basis that parimutuel betting would fund county fairs 
in every county. Prior to that, they only had about a half a dozen 
fairs. You had the Citrus Fair in Mendocino County and the Citrus 
Fair in San Bernardino County, and Pomona, and a few other little 
fairs that didn t amount to anything. 

Now, when senate reapportionment came, did it also change the 
style of the lobbyists? 

No, I don t think so. As the lobbyists dropped out, and they were 
replaced you know, there s a continual turnover in the lobby group. 
I think people who replaced them replaced the guys who worked on 
the senate side with fellows who were used to the assembly type 
operation. And there s a difference the way the assembly works 
with lobbyists and the way the senate works with lobbyists. 

Which had party affiliation rather than party caucus rather than 
seniority and 

Well, yes, in the assembly generally, is where you can get a new 
idea introduced. Basically, because you ve got younger men all 


Teale: the time, and the men of the longer tenure, and more conservative 
attitudes as men get older, the lobbyists used it as a stopping 
field. They would initiate stuff in the assembly, and they would 
stop stuff in the senate. So, the two styles were different, You 
had some men who could work either side very well, and you had 
some men that couldn t work both sides. 

Rowland: So you had these kind of specialized lobbyists who only worked 

for the assembly, and other specialized lobbyists who worked with 
the senate. 

Teale: That s right. Well, what you found was, that certain lobbyists 

worked the assembly side about eighty percent of the time, and you 
only saw them occasionally on the senate side, and vice-versa. 
You had some men who almost exclusively worked the senate. Now, 
the city of San Francisco almost 

Rowland: Is this still true today, do you think? 
Teale: I don t this it s as true as it was. 
Rowland: Before reapportionment? 

Teale: Before reapportionment, yes. The city and county of San Francisco 
lobbyist for years never -went to the assembly side. He worked 
the senate exclusively, because that was the type of operation 
he was interested in. He was interested in stopping things to 
maintain a status quo. And I think to the same extent, to some 
extent, the University of California lobbyist, Jim Corley, had 
that sort of an operation going. He was much more friendly with 
the senators than he was with assemblymen. Of course, there were 
fewer senators to know, but he knew a greater percentage of senators 
than he did 

Rowland: What legislation was Corley trying to stop? 

Teale: He was trying to stop any competition that encroached on the 

perogatives of the university and trying to stop any lessening of 
the autonomy that the university enjoys; he was trying to stop 
any attack on their funding. 

Rowland: [tape recorder turned off, then turned back on] Weren t there 
legislators that became lobbyists after they were defeated for 

Teale: Yes. And some resign to become lobbyists, 
Rowland: Some resign to become lobbyists? 


Teale: Dan Creedon was one that did that. He resigned as an assemblyman 
to become a lobbyist for the beer industry. 

Rowland: Garibaldi was also an assemblyman, wasn t he? 

Teale: Yes. And Tom Craig was an assemblyman and then he became a 

lobbyist for Orange County. Davy Oliver, who came off of the 
assembly desk to become a lobbyist for the insurance industry. 
They guy who represented the wine industry, Jeff [Jeff erson E. ]Peyser, 
who had been an assemblyman, and then went to the lobby. 

Rowland: "Is it because, which seems natural to me, that these legislators 
knew how the senate and assembly worked? 

Teale: Without exception they were men who understood the workings of 
the house. 

Rowland: Gordon Garland also got into lobbying, didn t he? 

Teale: Gordon Garland was an assemblyman; he had been Speaker of the 
assembly, in fact, and then left the assembly and lobbied for 
water interests. And he was an excellent lobbyist. 

Rowland: And they already have the contacts, and they know many of the men 
in there. 

Teale:. But more than the contacts you see, the contacts change. Within 
five years of the time you re out of office there s hardly anybody 
left that you worked with. Heck, I was second or third in 
seniority when I left the senate, aid five years later, there were 
maybe one or two people that I had worked with left in the house. 
But more than the contacts, it s a legislator s knowledge of the 
mechanics fo the legislature that is very, very important to the 
people they represent. How do you get things done? When do you 
get things done? Who do you see? Who s important? 

Rowland: After reapportionment, was there a change in which many of the 
former lobbyists who worked only with the assembly now came to 
the senate to work with those former assemblymen who now took 
senate seats? 

Teale: Yes, yes. That was the impression I had. 

Rowland: The recent California Journal article on lobbyists showed that the 
legislature rated Gillies as the most effective lobbyist. It 
described him as one who came in with hard facts and wasn t overly 
friendly, but presented a very straight argument. 


Teale: Doug Gillies was the first committee consultant that we had. And 
he wasn t paid by the senate. He was paid for by Luther Gibson, 
the senator from Vallejo. He was Luther Gibson s assistant. After 
he d been active as consultant for about a year, as I remember, 
then he became a paid consultant by the senate. The senate 
picked him up, because we began to use committee consultants 
then, because he worked out so well in the old governmental 
organization committee. The governmental efficiency committee, 
for many, many years, had had what we liked to call work sessions, 
which the press liked to call secret session, which the fate of 
bills were decided. We usually got together the day or the 
night before, and went over the bills, and when one of those work 
sessions was ended, every member of the committee understood 
thoroughly what the bill purported to do, whether it did what 
it was supposed to do or not, and what changes you had to make in- 
the bill to make it do what the author wanted it to do. The result 
was the committee got a very bad name. The chairman was very 
blunt about it; he d say to the author, "We have a few minor 
technical amendments, here for you to accept." Well, the author 
usually accepted them, or you didn t have any bill, and the 
freshmen would want to know what did the amendments do, and the 
chairman would generally say, "It makes a good bill out of it." 
No more explanation than that. So the author had to take the 
amendments on faith, and then try to figure out what they did 
later. The process had a lot to be said for it. I think that 
committee, above any other at that time, understood and knew, 
what was in the bills, understood what they were doing. 

Rowland: Would you rate Doug Gillies as an effective 


Rowland : 

Rowland : 

Doug Gillies had to be one of the most competent men that we ever 
had working for the senate at that time. Undoubtedly there are 
some men now who are just as competent. But he was a part time 
law student; I don t know if he ever got his degree or not. But 
at that time, he was a part time law student, and he had a kind 
of a methodical way about him 

But he was different than Garibaldi s style. 

Oh, yes, yes. Gillies was absolutely cold and impersonal, 
a lot on himself. 


Not like Garibaldi and the Jim Corley good old boy type of lobbyist 

Gillies wasn t particularly friendly. I always got along well with 
Doug because I had a lot of respect for his brain power. But he 
had we used to refer to him as Senator Gillies, because he did 
the thinking for Gibson. But he was excellent; he was an excellent 
staff man. He had a lot of ability 


Rowland: Was Gillies kind of the wave of the future of the new lobbyists? 

Teale: No, I wouldn t say that. There were a lot of people who would have 
liked to have emulated him, but they never made it. Gillies had a 
style all his own, and he had an ability to take facts and 
information and put it together in an attractive package. It may 
not have been a good package, but it was attractive, because it 
was he made it simple to understand. He was able to cut all the 
extraneous material, and say, "Here s the guts of the matter right 
here. This is what it does, one, two, three." He wouldn t have a 
bill analysis; he d take a forty page bill and he d dig into it, 
and he d find out exactly what it did. And usually it was only 
one or two things that you accomplished in a bill. But he could 
go right to the heart of the matter and tell who benefitted and 
who lost. 

Rowland: We cut off the last tape when we talked about reapportionment just 
when I was asking you the question about Tom Rees and his attempt 
to get at large elections in Los Angeles, rather than district 
elections for the new senate posts that emerged out of reapportion 
ment. [tape recorder turned off] 

Teale: We re talking about the battle between Rees and Unruh over the 
at large elections for new senatorial districts in Los Angeles? 

Rowland: Yes, at large versus district battle in Los Angeles. 

Teale: Of course, Unruh s interest was to create districts that his friends 
in the assembly could win, and I imagine in the back of his head 
somewhere was the idea the he could gain control of the senate as 
well as the assembly. Because of that fact that you couldn t get 
a senate reapportionment bill through the assembly that didn t 
have definite senate districts, individual districts in Los 
Angeles, sort of dictated the defeat of Rees desire to have an 
at large election in L.A. County. It just wasn t practical. 

I don t remember that there was much more than a lot of smoke 
about that one. We finally came to the conclusion that you had to 
have definite individual districts, and that s all there was to it. 
Assembly Speaker Unruh followed our principle that you divided as 
few cities or as few political subdivisions as possible in the 
process of creating the fourteen and a half districts in L.A. County. 

Rowland: We have a few other questions here. Let my just briefly go through 
them on reapportionment. I think I sent you the question on the 
debate between the 1966 general election supporters versus the 
special election supporters in the senate and assembly. 



Rowland ; 

Rowland : 


Rowland : 




I think probably the genesis of that was that some of the senators 
felt that a special election would give the assemblymen a free ride 
against them. The issue kind of took care of itself as 

Is that, again, the battle with Speaker Unruh and Senator Rees? 

No, that was an individual feeling among the senators who rep 
resented they knew that in the new districts, they would not only 
have to face newcomers, but if there was a special, they d have 
to face the assemblyman who wanted to change houses. 

And who would not be sacrificing their own seat if they lost the 
senatorial election. 

That s right, and there s always been a great desire by the 
assemblymen to become senators, and I think it s the difference in 
the two houses that makes that desirable to these guys; they want 
to get out from underneath the dictatorship of the Speaker. 

So that didn t 
Speaker Unruh. 

signal any battle between pro tern Hugh Burns and 

No, I don t think so. The issue took care of itself as we kept 
dragging along and dragging along, it finally got to the point 
where the practical election was the general election; just follow 
the routine normal election process. If we d done this in 1964, 
and been faced with a two year wait for a general election, then a 
special election would have been rather attractive. We didn t get 
it done until way over into sixty well, at the end of 64 
October or November or December, sometime along in there before we 
finally got it worked out, just in time for the filing dates for 
the primary. So the issue took care of itself; the special election 
argument disappeared. 

Now about that Dolwig movement to divide the state in half: how 
serious was that? The Sacramento Newsletter seemed to indicate 
that it was pretty serious and it had quite a bit of support from 
various county supervisor groups in the state. 

Yes, particularly from those county supervisor associations who 
were in the north. And the reason was that the north lost over 
they lost an awful lot of senate representation. I can t remember 
the exact figures, but we moved thirteen and a half seats into Los 
Angeles, and seven seats into Orange and San Diego counties. Those 
seats had to come from someplace, and they came from the rural areas. 
They came from Inyo County north, up the whole chain where you had 
not more than three counties to a man, and you now had, in one 
instance, twelve counties to a man. So there was a lot of support 


Teale: in northern California. One of the major problems was that nobody 
wanted to be included in southern California except Los Angeles. 
Even Imperial and Riverside County would have liked to be included 
in Northern California. 

Third house support I m not sure there was any third house 
opinion on it, except that 

Rowland: Except for those county supervisors. 

Teale: Except for the county supervisors, yes. The other lobbyists kind 
of gave lip service to their old friends and, you know, said, "Go 
get them, boy. We re with you." But they could care less. What 
the hell does a liquor man or a transportation guy or a guy who 
represents labor, care about where the representatives come from? 
All he wants is a chance to talk to him. They had lived with what 
they had, and they could live with what they were going to get, no 
matter what 

Rowland: But for those senate lobbyists, who wanted to maintain the status 
quo, it upset the balance in the senate. 

Teale: Yes. They were concerned about it. 

Rowland: It in a sense put them out of a job if they weren t familiar with 
the assembly operation. 

Teale: Yes. They were rightfully concerned about it, but I think they 

were all pretty philosophical about it, and that they figured they 
could live with it no matter what happens. The third house wasn t 
nearly as concerned about reapportionment as the senate was. 


Rowland: anything else in here on reapportionment that you find particularly 
important, any other questions that you might want to expand on? 

Teale: No, I don t think so. 



Chessman Case 

Rowland: I m wondering about the impact, particularly of the Chessman case 
on the relationship with Governor Pat Brown, and public reaction 
to the Chessman case and its effect on the legislature. 

Teale: Well, I think if you hadn t had newspapers, the Chessman case 
wouldn t have had any effect whatsoever. Chessman provided a 
great sounding board for both sides to talk about pros and cons of 
the death penalty. The death penalty had been an issue a long, long 
time; it was an issue when I went to the senate, and gradually 
I think it s a liberal position and in several respects a Democratic 
position to be against the death penalty and when we got the Demo 
cratic majority up, where it was a majority, then you began to see 
some very serious attempts against the death penalty. You had 
certain Democrats who always believed in the death penalty; there 
wasn t anything you could do to change them, and by the same token 
you had some Republicans who didn t believe in it, and you couldn t 
change them. 

Rowland: Was it primarily conservative Republicans who were the block to 
abolishing the death penalty? 

Teale: I guess they were conservative no, I don t think conservatism has 
anything to do with it. 

Rowland: The Friends Committee on Legislation pointed out that it was always 
conservative Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee that 
killed most of the senate bills that called for a moratorium on 
the death penalty or a complete abolition of it. 

Teale: The only kind of Republicans you had in the senate in those days 

were conservatives. So I don t think that really had much to do with 
it. Some of the real conservative men, I think, were against it. 


Teale: But it was the advent of senators like Joe Rattigan, 

Virgil O Sullivan, and Stan Arnold. I think was about fifty-fifty 
split vote one way or the other. I think your best source of 
information is two people: Joe Rattigan, who s over at Santa Rosa, 
and Ed Regan, from Weaverville. He s on the Third Court of Appeals 
in Sacramento. He s accessible; he was chairman of the judiciary 
committee throughout those critical hearings . He was the one who 
insisted that they be televised in their entirety. And I guess, 
probably he did more to educate the state on the death penalty than 
anybody that had anything to do with it. Because he insisted that 
every word be televised. Unfortunately the Channel 9 in San 
Francisco only had about three video tapes available at the time, 
so they d run a tape up in Sacramento, record it, run it back to 
San Francisco, broadcast it, and then turn right around and send it 
right back to Sacramento and they they d tape right over it. So 
there s no record. There s no permanent record. It was a marvelous 
hearing. It lasted two or three days, and they recorded every bit 
of it, but kept erasing it to use the same tape over and over. 
The didn t have enough money to save the tapes. What a blow for 
the historian! 

Rowland: Yes, right. But recreating the Chessman case, as I recall, it was 
Pat Brown who threw the decision into the legislature s lap, and 
he gave Chessman a sixty day reprieve and told the legislators to 
do something about the death penalty. Did that create some friction 
between senators and Brown s office? 

Teale: Well, that way, we figured he was a fink; he took the easy way out 
and put the blame on us instead of on him. I m not sure he had any 
blame coming, but the press was sure on him. On both sides. And 
he was kind of the goat for a long time there in that Chessman 

Rowland: Because he refused to take a position, where Governor Knight had 
taken a position. 

Teale: Yes. Of course, Pat s inclination has been always toward abolition. 
And he couldn t leave the decision of the courts to execute Chessman 
remain; he kept putting it off and putting it off. Everytime he 
gave Chessman a reprieve for sixty days, that made it worse. I 
think if I d been in Pat Brown s shoes, I would have commuted the 
sentence to life imprisonment. And then he d have been through 
with it. But he didn t. He kept putting the decision off. 

Rowland: And now we have it in the legislature s lap, and I guess we re 
focusing on that Senate Judiciary Committee meeting, Regan was 
chairman of that. 


Legislating the Death Penalty 

Teale: Yes. 

Rowland: It was [Senator] Fred Farr s bill, was it not, that they were 
deciding on? 

Teale: I think so. I think so. 

Rowland: Fred Farr called for a three year moratorium of the death penalty, 
not an abolition, but a moratorium. Do you recall the senate 
alignment on that bill, what the positions were, and the issues? 

Teale: I guess the alignment in the house was those who were against the 

death penalty, were in favor of Farr s bill. And those who weren t, 
were against it. As I remember, Farr was trying to take the easy 
way out; he was trying to get something on a temporary basis that 
we couldn t get on a permanent basis. 

Rowland: Now, did Cecil Poole or anyone else well, Frank Mesple wasn t 

around, but maybe Alexander Pope, who, I guess, was around those 
days. Did the governor s legislative secretaries come down to the 
legislature and talk on behalf of Pat Brown in favor of Farr s 

Teale: I can t remember. Fred Farr could tell you. He s available. He s 
in Carmel now. In fact, I had dinner with him the other day. He s 
just as alert as he was fifteen years ago. I m sure he could 
remember. I can t remember so much about that, because well, I had 
other responsibilities and other worries at the moment. I wasn t 
paying as much attention to that. Hell, I ve always had a very 
definite opinion on the death penalty; I ve been against it, and 
you couldn t change me. 

Rowland: One peculiar move that occurred at the same time of the Chessman 
case, was a move for judicial reform, which even 
Attorney General Stanley Mosk supported. One theory states that 
the move toward judicial reform was a smoke screen for maintaining 
the death penalty, in that it would limit the appeal procedure in 
the courts. Do you recall that in any way? 

Teale: No, no. 

Rowland: Did you work for judicial reform or recall that argument? 

Teale: No, I really don t. I monitored the judiciary committee for years, 
trying to learn something about various issues in that committee. 


Teale: Not being a lawyer, I missed a lot of it, and didn t understand a 
lot more of it. The only reform that I can remember was when we 
reformed the salary structure for the judges in the state. It 
used to be based upon the population within the judicial district, 
and we finally decided that a judge was a judge no matter where 
he was; so we established a uniform salary. That was the limit of 
my interest in it. 

Rowland: Now you said again that you voted against the death penalty. 

Teale: Yes. 

Rowland: What was your constituent reaction to that? 

Teale: Oh, they were about eighty percent the other way. 

Rowland: Really? 

Teale: Yes. I was questioned on it many times, and I told them, I said, 
"Everybody s entitled to be crazy on one issue, and this is my 
issue. And I m going to vote that way," and nobody ever held it 
against me. 

Rowland: So did you have some stiff competition the next election? 

Teale: Not based on that, no. Nobody "in the district ever made it an 
issue. I just explained that it was my personal conviction and 
I was entitled to vote at least one issue on my own, and that s 
the way I felt about it, and everybody respected it. I didn t know 
any other way to meet the issue. You know, you couldn t talk with 
somebody on the merits of the issue, because it was so emotional. 

Pressure on a Lame Duck Governor 

Rowland: Right. Yes, Especially at that time, the time of the Chessman 
case, it was a time of emotion. But one other question dealing 
with the death penalty: in the last month of Pat Brown s 
administration, when he was a lame duck governor, there was a 
tremendous movement, primarily coming from the clergy, for Pat Brown 
to commute the sentences of the sixty-four men on death row in 
San Quentin. Certain legislators joined in that movement; were you 
a part of that movement? Did you go to Brown s office, or 


No. No. 


Rowland: Do you recall that movement? 
Teale: Vaguely, yes. 

Rowland: You don t recall what senators got involved in it, or opposed it, 

Teale: Oh, no. I guess maybe well, it wasn t Farr, because Farr wasn t 
there. I can t really remember any of them. I just remember 
vaguely that it was an issue. 

Rowland: It seemed to be gaining front page headlines in the press, par 
ticularly in San Francisco. The Catholic archbishop, and an 
Episcopal church in Marin County were leaders of that movement. 
It must have made Pat Brown very uncomfortable! 

Teale: Yes. I guess what they were really trying to do they were trying 
to make Pat do by fiat what they couldn t accomplish by legislation. 
And I guess by that time, Brown had decided that people didn t 
want to 

Rowland: Did you ever communicate with Brown on that issue? Did you ever 

talk to him, and find out why he didn t commute the Chessman case 

Teale: No, no. 

Rowland: why he kind of tiptoed around the death penalty issue, while he had 
always been against when he was attorney general 

Teale: I guess he didn t commute Chessman s case because when he gave him 
that final sixty day reprieve and kicked it back to the legislature, 
he sort of made a commitment that he would do whatever the 
legislature decided. If they decided not to abolish the death 
penalty, Chessman go ahead and take the judgement. 

Rowland: That was the will of the 

Teale: Yes. He considered it the will of the people. He wasn t very 
happy about it. In fact, I guess that s probably the hardest 
thing that Pat Brown did in all his years, was handle the Chessman 
case. Because the outcome was against his own personal principles. 

Rowland: Right. The last question I have deals with the Bracero program. 
What do you know about the Bracero program? 

Teale: Almost nothing. 

Rowland: Is that one of your strong areas 


Teale: No. 

Rowland: or is that one of your weak areas? 

Teale: No. That s one of my very weak areas. 

Rowland: Oh. [he laughs] 

Teale: I know something about tideland oil, but I don t know much about 
the braceros. 

Rowland: Did you run over that article I sent you from the assembly it was 
an assembly committee staff article 

Teale: And it really didn t make too much sense to me, because I couldn t 
put it together. 

Rowland: You couldn t recall that compromise that Pat Brown offered to 
Willard Wirtz? 

Teale: No. No. No, I couldn t. 

Rowland: And the flak he got from the agribusiness and labor forces on 


Teale: No. All I know is this was in 65, and I was so busy trying to get 
myself re-elected at that time 

Rowland: During reapportionment. 

Teale: Yes. And trying to work up all the details of reapportionment and 
the effects of it 

Rowland: Well, your district would include quite a few farming areas 

Teale: Yes. We had well, not really. The major one, the only one af 
fected by the bracero program was Stanislaus County. It wasn t 
that much in my district. I can t for the life of me recall what 
was brought up. I know the agribusiness people were concerned 
about it, and I can t recall what was brought up or what the 
answers to it were. How I handled it, no, I can t remember. 

Rowland: You don t remember having to answer any hard questions during 
your campaign? 

Teale: No. I met with the agribusiness people four or five times during 
that campaign and I ended up 


Rowland ; 

Rowland : 

Rowland : 

Rowland : 

Rowland : 
Rowland : 


Do you recall what particular agribusiness? The Russell Griffin 
farm, or the 

No , no . 

Southern Pacific Land Company or Kern County Land Company? 

The Agribusiness Association of Stanislaus County was made up of 
oh, seed and feed yards, fertilizer guys, farm guys, big growers, 
big dairy people 

Do you recall any particular big growers? 

I can t recall their names, no. No. But really, we didn t have 
any real big growers in that area. We had the frozen food industry 
out at Patterson, and then the bean growers, but you know, they re 
nothing like Griffin or Southern Pacific or Tenneco, or those 
people on the west side of the Valley. They re all tiny little 
farmers in Stanislaus County compared to those guys. 

But there was at that time a very active agribusiness 
association down there made up of growers, suppliers, shippers, 
and food processors that used to meet at least once a week. I 
can remember meeting with them, and we d discuss the issue, and 
apparently whatever attitude I had on it, at that time seemed to 
satisfy them, because I had some good support from that group. 

Pat Brown mentioned that he was developing a master plan for migrant 
workers. Do you recall what happened to that plan? 

As I recall, it never amounted to much. It never got off the 
ground . 

How come? 

I don t remember. Can t remember. 

Lack of federal funding? 
for that master plan. 

He was hoping to get some federal funding 

Rowland ; 

I guess maybe the lack of funding, and it may have been lack of 
support among the legislature; I don t know. Because any time you 
get federal funding or any kind of funding, it has to go through 
the budget. And that s sometimes a little difficult. 

So you don t recall any of Pat Brown s staff members, like 

Frank Mesple, for instance, coming around in the legislature doing 

the groundwork for Brown s compromise. 


Teale: Oh, I m sure they did; I m sure they did. But I don t recall it. 
Rowland: Who should we talk to on that? 

Teale: I d talk to Frank Mesple. He s got an excellent memory for what 
happened during those years. 

Rowland: Anyone else who, let s say, supported agribusiness in the legisla 
ture; any strong agribusiness senators that maybe we should talk to. 

Teale: You might talk to Howard Way if you re around Sacramento. Yes. 
Howard is head of the adult authority now, and he s Republican, 
but he was very prominent in all the ag operations. 

Rowland: Now he became the pro tern, right? 

Teale: Yes. For a short time. I think he d give you an honest answer 
to it, too. 

Rowland: Any individuals who lobbied for religious or citizen interest 

groups, that we should talk to who opposed the bracero program 
and agribusiness back in the early sixties? 

Teale: Oh, I guess, the Friends Committee on Legislation those two 
that man and wife team. 

Rowland: Trevor Thomas? 

Teale: No. They re foreigners; they re German people. He was very active 
in the child care programs for the migrant workers, and migrant 
health programs, and I can t recall their name offhand. But they re 
still around Sacramento. I see them occasionally. 



Comparing Citizen and Special Interest Lobbies 

Rowland: How effective were the citizen lobbies? They certainly didn t have 
the financing that Southern Pacific, Pacific Telephone, or oil 
companies had. But they had the moral argument in their favor. 

Teale: Yes. And I think they were fairly effective. You re talking 
about people like the Friends and those people. 

Rowland: Yes. And the American Civil Liberties Union? 

Teale: The ACLU? Yes. I think one of the things you have to realize 

about Sacramento is that everybody has access to the legislators. 
If they re sincere and honest in their efforts and have a piece 
of business to conduct, most doors are open to them. And if 
they ve got a good reasonable argument, and somebody hasn t got 
there way ahead of them and made a man fixed in his mind about a 
certain issue, I think they had their influence. 

Rowland: How come the more heavily financed advocates appear to be the most 

Teale: Well, I guess because they re more restricted in their activity. 
Instead of having a chunk of pie this big [gesturing with his 
hands] to work with, they had a little piece of pie to work with. 
They re much narrower in their interests. 

Rowland: The high finance lobbyists. 

Teale: Yes. The highly financed lobbyists, like the oil lobbies, for 
instance, the oil business isn t a very big segment of our 
it s a big money segment, but as far as the breadth of scope, 
it s not very big. Whereas, the ACLU, the whole field of civil 


Teale: rights, is a great big chunk of the whole pie. Or the Friends 
they re interested in many, many things they re interested in 
the death penalty, and child care, migrant health programs, 
housing, prisons; just a whole host of things. So they had a wide 
grouped thing to attack, and you re only successful on a certain 
number of things, you know. 

Changing the Style of Lobbying 

Rowland : 

Rowland : 

Rowland : 

Did reapportionment increase the kind of representation 
It increased the number of lobbyists. 

But I think it happened for another reason than reapportionment, 
I think it happened because about that time we switched from a part 
time legislature to a full time legislature. And you didn t have 
the opportunity for individual groups of people, small organiza 
tions, churches, and schools to get their man off in the corner 
when he was home. So they had to resort to sending somebody to 
Sacramento to try to talk to him during that session. It hadn t 
worked very good, in my mind. It looks to me like in the early 
part of the session, the bills aren t before you, so there s 
nothing to talk about. There s nothing doing on the floor. The 
authors are just sitting there; the authors tend to be 
procrastinating. The legislators don t get legislation in action 
very soon. So there s nothing really to talk about. By the time 
they get to the point where they have to take action on the bill, 
there s so damn much legislation going on that it s impossible for 
the legislator to cope with it all. So he becomes a specialist 
in a few bills, and he tries to push his pets. And if he s 
successful fine, and if he isn t, he loses them. 

Did it increase the number 

Well, let s put the question this way. 
of citizen lobbyists? 


Along with the special interest lobbyists? 

Yes. And I think the reason was not reapportionment per se, but 
it was the changing character of the session, because your citizen 
used to have access to the legislator between sessions. He no 
longer had that access, and that change came about in 1964, and 
I think that s when we began to see a big influx of new lobbyists 
representing a lot of little minor citizen interests. And you 
couple that with the fact that you had more people trained to be 


Teale: lobbyists, more people with internship programs, and a lot of other 
programs that exposed people to the legislative process. And 
these people began to go out and look for jobs. So they in 
turn, because there was limited access to the legislature, went 
out and sold themselves to individual groups, convinced the group 
they had to have a lobbyist to be successful. 

Comparing Legislative Secretaries for Governor Brown 

Rowland: Getting back to a question that s been flagging me down here 
regarding Pat Brown s legislative secretaries, did you find 
Alexander Pope, Paul Ward, or Frank Mesple easier to work with? 

Teale: I found the easiest one to work with was Paul Ward. 
Rowland: Why? 

Teale: Well, he was closer to Pat for a long time. To begin with, I 
knew Paul; he d worked for the senate. He had worked for 
Stan Arnold, or George Miller [,Jr.]. I guess he worked for 
George Miller as a consultant to a special committee on education. 
Then he went downstairs to the governor s office and worked for 
Pat. He knew the legislature. You could talk to him. And he 
was also the guy who reviewed the bills for Pat. So he was 
more knowledgeable. Frank was the easiest to talk to, because of 
his manner. And he also was very knowledgeable. My impression of 
Alexander Pope was that he was kind of cold and stand-offish. 
Maybe it was shyness; I don t know. But there was something about 
him that I didn t ever think that he was very successful, and I 
gathered that the other guys had the same impression; he really 
didn t understand the legislature or its workings. Frank Mesple 
seemed to pick it up Frank didn t understand the legislature 
either when he came up there. But he learned real fast. He was 
able to learn because it was his manner. It s just his personality. 
He made friends in the legislature first, and then found out how 
it ticked. I guess Alexander Pope never did quite learn how the 
legislature worked. 

Rowland: It appeared that Pat Brown selected mostly legislators as delegates 
to the Democratic national conventions in 60 and 64. Why was 
that? Why did he select mostly legislators to be delegates? 

Teale: I don t know. I guess it was because we had more Democratic 

legislators than we d ever had before. We d never had as many 
as we had in 60 and 64. We had a big majority in both houses, 


Rowland : 


Teale: and most of the guys wanted to go, and I guess that was the way 

to keep peace with your legislature. I would say he selected more 
legislators than had gone previously, and maybe more than go at 
the present. I don t know what it is the last few years, but I 
think the reason was that he had more to select from and more 
pressure to take legislators. 

It is customary for the governor to select the delegates to the 
his party s convention? 

It s customary for the man who wins the election. See, Brown ran 
and he put up a delegate slate. And on that slate, he got as 
many legislators as he could to support him. And of course, the 
people select the slate, and then the governor controls, or 
whoever is the head of the slate, controls the vacancies. 

Rowland: Now this is the slate of delegates. 

Teale: Yes. On the ballot, you see the governor s name: Pat Brown, or 
Jerry Brown or whoever happens to be the candidate. But beyond 
him is a slate of delegates that he must submit. 


Teale: I guess the reason there were quite a few more legislators on those 
two delegations was because there were more available and 

Rowland: He wanted to keep peace with 

Teale: He wanted to keep peace with the legislature and secondly, he felt 
that every legislator that he appointed had a reservoir of support 
that would support him in his bid to be the chairman for the dele 



Joe Shell and the Independent Oil Companies 

Rowland: Okay. Now turning to the tidelands thing, just a few questions on 
this. Do you recall the Tidelands Act of 55 to give state right 
to active exploration and exploitation of tideland oil fields? 

Teale: Yes, that was the Shell Act. 

Rowland: Was Assemblyman Joe Shell primarily an oil interest legislator? 

Teale: Joe Shell was oil interest. He was an actual owner, and he was the 
son-in-law of a fellow named Harold Morton, who represented all of 
the independent oil interests. Harold Morton s daughter is, I 
believe, Younger s wife. Mildred Younger. And Morton was the 
lobbyist for independent oil. And Joe Shell actually owned an 
operating oil company. 

Rowland: Was that Shell s purpose in that bill? What was he trying to do? 
Teale: To get a chunk of it for independent oil. 
Rowland: Independent oil. 

Teale: Yes, for the small companies: Sinclair I can t remember all the 
little oil companies Occidental 

Rowland: In primarily the Long Beach area? 

Teale: Primarily any place that they had tidelands oil. Yes. 


The Question of Tidelands Oil Revenue 

Rowland: Now, another question here. What can you add about the tidelands 
the severing of the tideland oil funds for various projects, in 
the Knight-Pat Brown years? 

Teale: Well, I lived with the guy who was chairman of the Senate 

Subcommittee on the East Wilmington Oilfield: Virgil Sullivan. 
And I was on that committee. We simply were out to recapture some 
of that money. We were sure that the state, when they gave title 
to the tidelands to Long Beach, didn t have any idea what kind of 
money there was. Long Beach was forever coming in with special 
legislation to allow them to spend that tidelands money for 
something other than for trust purposes. So they wanted to build 

Rowland: As I recall, they money went in to the general fund? 

Teale: No. The revenue prior to the 64 or 65 act, whenever that was, 
went to Long Beach, and they could spend it for trust purposes. 
And they took advantage of it. They could spend it for government 
buildings, for development of the harbor 

Rowland: Park and recreation? 

Teale: Park and recreation, within the tidelands area. I can t remember 
all the details of what they could spend it for, but there were 
special restrictions. They wanted to spend it for everything 
streets, schools, they wanted to spend it for a great variety of 
things thay you would generally think was a general fund 
expenditure. And it was not a general fund; it was a special fund. 
And when we took over the tidelands and reached an agreement with 
them, we took the bulk of the revenue and most of it went in the 
general fund, and part of it went into the California higher 
education fund. That is, the capital outlay fund for higher 
education. And of course, that fund is in real trouble right now 

Rowland: That s the fund that went towards building Stanislaus State and 
Sonoma State, for instance? 

Teale: All the the state universities. 

Rowland: The University of California, too, or was that primarily a state 
universities fund? 

Teale: State university and University of California and we didn t prohibit 
its use from the community colleges. But they never got their 
finger in the pot, because the two senior higher education segments 
kept the community colleges out of it, by pretty skillful lobbying. 


Rowland: That s some of James Corley s work as UC lobbyist. 

Teale: And the later guys too. Of course, Jim wasn t there too much 
longer after 1964. 

We set aside I think it was ninety million a year that had 
to go first to capital outlay for higher education. If higher 
education didn t use it for that, then the legislature defined it 
as unnecessary and transferred the money into the general fund, 
for general fund expenditure. And that s what we did year after 
year after year. We d spend thirty or forty, fifty million dollars 
for capital outlay, and then transfer the balance into the general 
fund, for resolution. Oh, we did it in the budget language, which 
had the same effect as a resolution. It was simply a revenue 
raising effort to reach out and get that money that was piling up 
there at Long Beach that they couldn t legally use for purposes 
other than trust purposes. We wanted to capture the money and put 
it back in the general fund, and then for the higher education 
special capital construction fund. Strictly a strong arm holdup. 

If you develop some need for further discussion of this, 
Virgil resides in Williams he s in the Williams phone book 
Virgil Sullivan. 

Rowland: He s willing to talk about this. 

Teale: Oh, yes. He d be tickled to death to talk about it. But you d 
better get it on a cheap time of the day, because he ll talk to 
you about four hours. 

Rowland: Wasn t there a movement to take the money wasn t there a I believe 
at one point most of the revenue was supposed to be allocated for 
Parks and Recreation Department, and there was a movement to get 
that money out of parks and recreation allocation and to some 
other funds. 

Teale: Well, everybody wanted a chunk of the money. Everybody wanted a 

chunk of the money. I think we resolved it; you d have to talk to 
Virgil to be sure about it, but we resolved it by setting aside a 
specific amount, right off the top for education, and then put the 
rest in for appropriation by the legislature. Because, you know, 
everybody can make a good case for taking the money, but a good 
case this year may be a bad case next year. So, as I remember it, 
we left it more or less flexible. 

Rowland: What particularly strong oil lobbyists do you recall, and how 
effective were they? 


Teale: Well, the big battle was not pro or con taking the money. The 

big battle was who should get a chance to bid on the tidelands oil 

Rowland: Now, that comes from the State Lands Commission, right? 

Teale: It comes under the State Lands Commission, but we wrote the 
provisions of it. We wrote the competitive bidding and the 
divison of the leasing, right in the bill. We specified the 
percentages that oil companies had to break their field into. 

Rowland: What was that bill? Do you recall the 

Teale: I can t recall the number. But the bill was very interesting. If 
you go back and get it, and you ll find that 

Rowland: What year was this? 

Teale: Christ, I can t even remember that. 62, -3, -4; somewhere along 
in there. 

Rowland: Well, that makes it mid-sixties period. 

Teale: Yes, the mid-sixties.. What we did; we set up the concept of a 

field operator, so that one company would become the operator for 
the field. But we broke the field into undivided interest, so that 
you could bid on a two percent, four percent, six percent, ten per 
cent, and I think nobody was able to bid on more than forty. (It 
either was twenty-five or forty percent.) So you had a variety 
of interests. So you had about eight or ten different guys who 
could bid. 

Well, the leases, when they went up for bid, came in at around 
a ninety percent bid, and when you got down to the two percent 
interests, some of them went for a hundred and five percent of the 
yield. And the reason for that was a state and federal law on 
imported oil. And in order to get imported oil, you had to have a 
certain flow through of domestic oil through your refinery. So, 
these guys could afford to pay more than the field was worth more 
than the actual oil was worth in order to get the domestic oil to 
flow through their refinery so they d be qualified for more imported 
oil that they d get at a cheaper price. 

The guy who put us wise to that was a fellow who was in the 
U.S. Department of Interior, I believe. And we paid him ten 
thousand dollars or so to come out here and give us six weeks of his 
time and make a report. Can t remember his name. Virgil would 
know his name. He made quite a report, and insisted that the 


Teale: interest should be broken up. Prior to that time, you put an 

entire section of tidelands up for lease. Everybody bid on the 
entire operation, and the high bidder took it all. 

But Long Beach was totally different. You had a single 
operator, and I think there were three companies that bid on the 
rights to operate the East Wilmington oilfield. And I think all 
three companies had a chunk of the major action. 

But we gave people like Ed Pauley, Getty, and Sinclair and 
some other Texaco some small independent companies (in this 
state) , a chance to bid on and get a piece of the action, and 
provide a flow-through oil for their refinery operation. That was 
the biggest battle and the biggest hurdle to overcome, was how 
to solve that problem involving big versus little oil companies. 
When we solved that problem, we snagged the money for the state. 

Rowland: For what fund? Parks and recreation? 

Teale: No, no. The general fund, and education, and we gave Long Beach a 
maximum amount every year. We figured that the East Wilmington 
oilfield would last about 

Rowland: This was the Long Beach field. 

Teale: Yes. We figured that the field had about a thirty year life, and 
we were just about right on it. It s just about exhausted now, 
that particular field. 

The other major decision we had to make, was how to draw the 
lines for the extent of the field, and how to draw the high water 

Rowland: Didn t that involve the federal government too? 

Teale: Not at that time, no. No, the federal government came in at the 

three mile limit. The federal government had their line set. But 
the inshore line, the high water mark, had varied from time to time 
with erosion. And we had to arbitrarily set the boundaries for 
that. Very interesting. Dick Dolwig was in on that, I was in on 
it, Virgil Sullivan, and I think Stan Arnold. 

Rowland: Did Virgil Sullivan play kind of the antagonist role to the oil 
companies, or was he more a supporter of oil interests? 

Teale: No, he wasn t a supporter of oil; he was a supporter of the 

pocketbook. He wanted to get his hands on the pocketbook. Of 
course, the big cartoons of the day showed him standing on 


Teale: somebody s shoulder reaching into the cookie jar, with Pat Brown 
in the wings urging him on. Virgil has a copy of that cartoon. 
A fellow named Charlie [Charles L. ] Baldwin was committee secretary. 
And he s still around the legislature. He s a consultant, and I 
do believe he works for Senator Ralph [C.] Dills, now. 

Rowland: Now, what role did he play in this? 

Teale: He was committee consultant. He helped draft the act and he 

Rowland: You still don t recall the name of that US Department of Interior 

Teale: No. No. I can t recall the name of that guy that Virgil could 
tell you in a minute. It was a fairly well-known oil consultant 
at that time, an economist. Ken Cory got into the act a little 
bit later. 

Rowland: In the Reagan years? 

Teale: Well, after Sullivan left the subcommittee,! was chairman of the 
tidelands committee, and at that time we were more interested in 
determining the areas of the tidelands, up and down the state. I 
held it for a year or two and got into some other action and got 
too busy and Cory was a member of the committee. It was a joint 
house committee, a two house committee and he took it over and had 
it until he left the legislature. 

Rowland: Well, actually we d better wrap up here. 

Teale: Cory s another guy you might talk to about but I m sure he wouldn t 
know the guy s name who came from the federal department of interior. 

Rowland: Okay. Good. That brings us to a close. That you for a most 
informative interview. 


Transcriber: Alison Nichols 
Final Typist: Matthew Schneider 


TAPE GUIDE - Stephen P. Teale 

Interview 1: July 18, 1978 

tape 1, side A 1 

tape 1, side B H 

tape 2, side A 21 

tape 2, side B 3Q 

Interview 2: September 27, 1978 

tape 3, side A 38 

tape 3, side B 49 

tape 4, side A 53 

tape 4, side B 70 


INDEX Stephen P. Teale 

Agribusiness Association of Stanislaus County, 65. See also agriculture, 

growers . 

growers, 64, 65. See also braceros; Agribusiness Association of Stanislaus 


Alcohol Beverage Control Commission, 46. See also Equalization, Board of. 
Allen, Don A., 21, 28, 29, 30 
anti-communism. See California senate, un-american activities committee; 

San Diego Research Library 
Arnold, Stanley, 16, 30, 60, 69, 75 

Baldwin, Charles L., 76 

Begovich, John, 17, 26, 30 

Bell, Theodore, 2 

Bonelli, Frank, 14 

bracero program, 64, 66 

Bradley, Don, 10, 40 

Brown, Edmund G. , Sr. (Pat), 18, 23, 25, 26, 27, 29, 30, 33, 35, 48, 60, 62, 

63, 70 

Burns, Hugh M. , 12, 16, 17, 23, 26, 33, 34, 35, 38 
Burns-Porter Act, 35 

Calaveras Prospect, 38, 39, 40 
California assembly, 29, 32, 33, 35 

assembly bill 1, 29 

assembly elections and reapportionment committee, 29 

and liquor control, 44 

and lobbyists, 52 

reapportionment, 30 

speaker race, 30 
California Democratic Council, 9 

factions in, 9, 10 

founding of, 9, 10 

local clubs, 10 

schism with Democratic State Central Committee, 11, 20 
California legislature, 69, 70 

Joint Committee on Tidelands, 76 

Joint Interim Committee on Governmental Reorganization, 44 
California senate, 13, 14, 16, 17, 18, 19, 23, 29, 31 

and death penalty, 59, 61 

effects of 1966 reapportioniaent on, 31, 32, 34 

finance committee, 32 

governmental efficiency committee, 55 


California senate, cont. 

governmental organization committee, 45, 46 

judiciary committee, 60, 61 

and lobbying, 52, 53 

pro tern race, 34, 35 

relations with governor s office, 18, 33 

senate bill 6, 21 

subcommittee on East Wilmington Oildfield, 72, 74, 75, 76 

un-american activities committee, 36, 38, 41 

water resources committee, 35 
Carr, Francis, 50 
Campbell, Peggy, 40 
Coffey, Bert, 37 
Collier. Randoloh. 14 
Comhs Richard E., 36, 38 
Cor ley, James H., 53 
Cory, Kenneth, 76 
Cranston, Alan, 9, 10, 11 
Creedon, Don, 45, 54 
Cunardi, Paul, 30 
Curran, Robert, 5, 39 

death penalty, 62-63 

Caryl Chessman decision (1960), 59, 60, 61, 62, 63 
Democratic National Conventions: 

1960, 69, 70 

1964, 15, 69, 70 
Democratic party, 6, 8, 20, 23 33, 34, 35, 38, 41, 59 

Calaveras County central committee, 5, 7, 8 

campaign methods of, 10 
Dempsey, Van, 9, 10 
Desmond, Earl, 35 

Dirksen Amendment (federal), 16, 17, 20. See also reapportionment 
Dolwig, Richard, 33, 75 

elections : 

campaign financing, 42 

campaign methods of, 5, 6, 9, 10, 26, 27, 41, 42 

1912 gubernatorial, 2 

1948 supervisorial (Calaveras County) , 4 

1953 senate special, 5, 8, 38, 39, 40, 42 

1953 lieutenant governor, 44 

1958 legislative, 42 

1966 senate, 26-28 
Equalization, Board of (California), 46 


Fair Trade Act (California), 48, 49. See also liquor control 

Farr, Fred, 16, 22, 61 

Fisher, Hugo, 37 

Flynn, Frank X. (Porky), 45 

Free Speech Movement, 35 

Friends Committee on Legislation (Quakers), 66 


Garibaldi, James D., 45, 49, 50, 54 
Garamandi, Ray, 38 
Gibson, Luther, 55 
Gillies, Dugald (Doug), 55, 56 
governor s office (Brown), 18, 33 
and legislative secretaries, 69 
Graves, Richard P., 26 
Grunsky, Donald, 22 

higher education: 

financing of, 72, 73 

Jesperson, Chris, 14 
Johnson, Arthur, 17 
Johnson, Hiram, 2 

Kent, Roger, 10, 39 
Kleps, Ralph, 14 
Kerr, Clark, 33, 36 

League of Women Voters, 30 

Leake, Paul, 46 

liquor control, 44, 45, 46, 47. See also Weinberger, Caspar; Fair Trade Act 

lobbying, 49, 50, 51, 52, 53 

comparing citizen and special interests styles of, 67 

effect of 1966 reapportionment on, 68, 69 

and horseracing, 52 

and liquor interests, 45, 46, 47, 48 

and oil interests, 22, 71 
Long Beach (City of), 73 
Los Angeles (County of) : 

designing 1966 reapportionment for, 19-21, 56. See also reapportionment, 

Lyng, Richard E., 26, 28 


McCarthy, Jack, 17, 33 

Marks, Milton, 20 

Mayo, Jesse M. , 5, 41, 42 


newspapers, 23 
Mesple, Frank, 66, 69 
Mills, James, 35 

Miller, George, Jr., 9, 11, 12, 16, 22, 26, 37, 38, 39, 45, 47, 69 
More, Avery, 5, 41 
Morton, Harold, 7 

Oliver, Davy, 54 

Olney, Warren III, 46 

O Sullivan, Virgil, 15, 16, 18, 30, 60, 73, 75, 76 

Parkman, Harry, 45 
Peyser, Jefferson E., 54 
Pittman, Stanley, 30 
Pope, Alexander III, 69 
Porter, Carly, 35 

Rattigan, Joseph, 17, 60 
reapportionment (California legislature) 

assembly elections and reapportionment committee, 29 

1960 Bonelli initiative, 13, 22 

1963 Supreme Court (U.S.) decision affecting, 15, 18 

1966 assembly, 30, 57 

1966 senate, 13, 15, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 31, 56, 57, 58 

retirement benefits and, 28, 29 

senate reapportionment committee, 17, 18, 19, 21 

Wellman commission, 13, 18. See also lobbying, Los Angeles (County of) 
Reagan, Ronald, 33, 34 
Rees, Thomas M. , 21, 23, 56 
Regan, Edwin, 16, 17, 30, 60 

Republican party, 5, 8, 19, 20, 33, 41, 46, 59 
Richards, Richard, 9, 10 
Romaggi, Robert, 5, 42 
Rue, Vern, 5, 39, 40, 41, 42 

Salinger, Pierre, 9, 39, 40, 41 
Samish, Arthur H. , 45 
San Diego Research Library, 37 
Schrade, Jack, 34, 35 
Sedgwick, Harold T., 30 


Shell Act (California) . See Tidelands Act of 1955 

Shell, Joseph, 71. See also Tidelands Act of 1955 

Sherwood, Clyde, 5, 38, 40, 41 

Silliman, James, 44 

Silver, Phill, 14 

Slattery, Jack, 30 

Snyder, Elizabeth, 9, 10, 11 

State Lands Commission (California) , 74 

Sturgeon, Vernon, 22-23 

Supreme Court (United States), 18 

reapportionment decision of 1964, 15, 18 
Symons, William, Jr., 30 

Tidelands Act of 1955 (California), 71. See also tidelands oil; Joseph Shell 
tidelands oil: 

bidding on, 74, 75 

revenues from, 72, 73, 75. See also Tidelands Act of 1955; Joseph Shell 
Truman, Harry, 

University of California, 35 

Unruh, Jesse M. , 9-12, 23, 24, 30, 35, 56 

Vallejo, Mariano, 1 
Van Dieman, Ralph, 37 

Ward, Paul, 69 

Warren, Earl, 15, 16 

Warschaw, Carmen, 9, 10 

Way, Howard, 34, 35, 66 

Weinberger, Caspar, 44-46. See also liquor control; California legislature, 

Joint Interim Committee on Governmental Reorganization 
Weinberger committee. See California legislature, Joint Interim Committee 

on Governmental Reorganization 
Weiner, Rosalind, 11, 12 
Weingard, Alvin, 30 

Wellman commission. See reapportionment, Wellman commission 
Williams, Robert, 16 
Winton, Gordon, 30 

Younger, Mildred, 71 

Assemblyman Don A. Allen 

Regional Oral History Office University of Californa 

The Bancroft Library Berkeley, California 

Governmental History Documentation Project 
Goodwin Knight /Edmund Brown, Sr. , Era 

Don A. Allen 

An Interview Conducted by 
James R. Rowland 
in 1979 

Copyright flT 1980 by the Regents of the University of California 



Growing Up in the Midwest 1 
Joining the Marine Corps 5 
Roots of Political Involvement: Joining the Democratic Party 6 

Struggles with the State Relief Administration 9 
The Un-American Activities Committee: Principal Personalities 13 
Founding the Economy Block 16 

Background to Senate Reapportionment 23 
Maneuvers Around Reapportionment 36 
Pensions and Reapportionment 47 

Backing Ronald Reagan 62 
Conflicts with the Republican Assembly . 63 
Endorsing Max Rafferty 66 

The Inheritance Tax Appraisal Episode 67 
The Assembly Lockup 74 
Interpreting the Unruh-Brown Differences 76 



APPENDIX I - Biography of the Honorable Don A. Allen, Sr. 86 

APPENDIX II - Letter to Governor Edmund G. Brown, Sr. , from 
Assemblyman Don A. Allen, November 16, 1965; with remarks 

of George Bernard Shaw to accompany letter 88 

APPENDIX III - Copy of Commentary by Murray Wesgate of Radio 

Station KPOL, Sacramento, January 24, 1966 93 

APPENDIX IV - Letter from Vernon Kilpatrick to Don A. Allen, 

January 25, 1972 99 

INDEX 105 


Assemblyman Don A. Allen, Sr. was interviewed by the Regional Oral 
History Office for the Goodwin Knight-Edmund G. Brown, Sr. segment of its 
Governmental History Documentation Project. His position as chairman of the 
Assembly Elections and Reapportionment Committee (1963-1966) during the 
reapportionment of the state senate and knowledge of state government as 
author of the Legislative Sourcebook combined to make him an important 
contributor to our documentation of state government. 

Born in the Midwest and tied to a colonial family heritage, Allen first 
ventured to California to join his uncle s business in Los Angeles in the 
early 1920s. After a tour of duty in the U.S. Marine Corps that took him to 
China, Nicaragua, and Haiti, he returned to Los Angeles to head a local 
chapter of the Veterans of Foreign Wars. In 1938 a bipartisan coalition of 
businessmen and party leaders persuaded Allen to run for the Sixty-third 
Assembly District in Los Angeles. With the backing of both parties, Allen 
won the primary and general elections as a Democrat. 

As a freshman assemblyman he joined a chorus of Republican and Demo 
cratic legislators in opposition to Democratic Governor Culbert Olson and his 
State Relief Administration, after having a few heated run-ins with the 
governor himself. A break in his legislative career in 1949 found him as a 
Los Angeles city councilman until his return to the assembly in 1956, again 
representing the sixty- third district. Through his allegiance to Jesse Unruh, 
Allen won the chairmanship to the elections and reapportionment committee 
when Unruh became Assembly Speaker in 1962. It was in these roles that Unruh 
and Allen fought with the rural dominated senate to find an acceptable reap 
portionment plan to meet federal court deadlines for senate re-districting. 
To cap his involvement in the reapportionment struggle, he authored, along 
with his staff, the Legislative Sourcebook, a valuable compendium of legislator 
records and past reapportionments up to 1965. For his contribution to legis 
lative history, he was awarded the title of California legislative historian 
for life by the senate and assembly in 1966. 

I arranged a one-session interview with Assemblyman Allen at the 
University of California s Governmental Relations office in Sacramento. 
We began with his colorful personal and family history and moved to his early 
years in the legislature during the Olson and Warren administrations. On the 
Knight-Brown era, he spoke on his struggles with senate reapportionment, his 
battle with Governor Brown over pension benefits, his relations with the 
Republican party, and his reflections on Jesse Unruh and the Unruh-Brown 


After rough editing, the transcript was forwarded to Assemblyman Allen 
for final review. He took pains to keep it in conversational style, although 
he did add annotations to chapters one, two and five. In addition, he gratu 
itously re- typed the rough transcript, the product of which appears as the 
following memoir. 

This interview represents the quintessential Don Allen: candid, color 
ful, and spiced with raw criticism that reveals the give and take of politics. 
Coming from a hard-working family background in Iowa, he applied himself 
assiduously in politics as well as in life, and developed a style and manner 
the reader will distinguish as singularly Don Allen. 

James H. Rowland 

23 January 1980 

Regional Oral History Office 

486 The Bancroft Library 

University of California at Berkeley 


(Interview I: January 16, 1979) *# 

Hon. Don A. Allen, Sr. 

California Legislature - Retired 

Growing Up in the Midwest 

Allen: Okay. In regards to family genealogy, my mother s father came from 
France. His family name was Toulouse and he was born in Toulouse. 
He was, however, raised in a little town called Lily. Learning his 
trade, he became a master printer. He named my mother "Lily" in 
remembe ranee. In 1839, he and his brother migrated to Fotosi, 
Wisconsin where he set up a newspaper and printing shop. No doubt 
influenced to settle there by his cousins who became successful 

It was here he met and married grandmother. Her maiden name was 
Prlscllla Wayne, the daughter of "Mad Anthony" Wayne of Stony Point 
fame. The name of Priscilla Wayne was known in the newspaper field 
for 111 years. She founded a column which carried that name from 
1845 to 1956 by succession of her 4 daughters and one grand 

My grandfather and his brother served with the Wisconsin Volunteers 
during the Civil War. They were mustered out at the cessation of 
hostilities in Pennsylvania. Grandpa s brother, led him home 
because he had contacted "Rubella" (German Measles). He could 
barely make out day from night. His training was so great that he 
would set type with the best. It still facinates me that even as 
blind as he was how well he carried out his work and great service 
and training to other sightless people. He also helped General 
John A. Logan found the Grand Army of the Republic, the greatest 

veteran s organization in this nation. 

So then on my father s side, some of his family had come from 
the green mountains of Vermont. The patriarch of our family was 
a brother of Ethan Allen, which caused my father, who was later 
a judge in Nebraska, to say that Ethan Allen and his brother 
captured Fort Ticonderoga with an ax and a pitchfork, and our 
Allen crowd promptly threw the ax away and kept the pitchfork, 
because we went into politics. 

So anyway, his grandfather or my great-grandfather migrated 
West by way of Kentucky. He was with the Daniel Boone crowd, and 
every time Boone made a move, he followed West with him. My 
grandfather was born in West Virginia and came West as a youngster 
into Missouri. My father was born in Bethany, Missouri. Later 
grandpa migrated and home steaded in Iowa. 

Grandpa used to twit an old-maid aunt of mine, that was a school 
teacher and principal, about her looking up the family tree for 
five hundred bucks, causing the rest of the family to pitch in 
and spend twenty thousand to hush it up. I was born half way 
between Marne and Atlantic, Iowa. So that s about the background. 

I spent considerable of my teenage years in the Midwest, as did 
others of my age , working. Most of my summer vacations were 
spent on my grandfathers f arm ; that is, Grandpa Don Allen, same 
name as mine at Allendale. However, it was not all drudgery 
for we had our fun. We filled our time with hunting, trapping and 
fishing. We were so busy that juvenile misbehavior was nil. We 
also made county and state fair exhibits. We did not have much 

time to create mischief. The State of Iowa constructed a reformi- 
tory which seldom had inmates confined and outside help was needed 
for its maintenance. 

Rowland: You went to local schools? 

Allen: Oh yes, I went to public elementary and high schools in Iowa and 

Rowland: What were the schools like? Were they small, rural schools? 

Allen: Well, no, Oak Street in Council Bluffs had first thru 6th grades 
and about 80-85 kids. My first school was at Prairie Rose where 
I entered the first grade and attended summer school only. It 
was a one-room school, where we had a teacher that taught all 
grades up to the eighth grade. I guess it had an attendance of 
30 pupils. Prairie Rose is just outside of Walnut, Iowa. As a 
consequence, the small country school that I did go to was one- 

Our teacher once said, when she retired after some fifty years, 
that during trapping season we were probably not the most brilliant 
kids in the state, but we sure were fragrant. Because, you know, 
you were trapping skunk and mink and so forth and so on, and there 
was a little aroma left. 

Rowland: Were there relatives in your family or teachers that you were close 

Allen: Well, I had that Aunt Mary. She retired and came to our home to 
live. She taught my sister, Grace, and myself to read and write 
by the time we were about four to four- and- a- half years old. When 
1 went to school in Council Bluffs, I was about five and they 
immediately elevated me two grades because of my ability to handle 
reading, writing and arithmetic and other measures. 

I wouldn t advise rapid promotions. I became a pest probably 
if there had been a firecracker built big enough to blow the 
school house. i was j ust blg enou gh a punk in those days to 
light it. It made me aggressive. I had to hold jny own with 
peers that were older than me, and as a consequence I was always 
in a fight, or something. I became just a village brat. So 
anyway, that s later after we moved into the larger town. 

Rowland: Were there any childhood books in your home that you remember 
that you read? 

Allen: Oh, yes. One of the first books I remember reading was Quo Vadls, 
the old general book, and the Bible was required reading by us. 

Rowland: Your family was very religious. 

Allen: Yes. 

Rowland: What religion? 

Allen: We re what they call Campbell ite Christian or Disciples of Christ, 
often referred to as "Sorehead Baptists." A Rev. Campbell broke 
away from the main Baptist Church. We were also called "Feetwashin 1 
Baptists," or whatever they call them. 

But anyhow, mine was the usual school a little football, a little 
of this, a little of this, a little of that. 

Living next door to us in Council Bluffs, Iowa, was a Civil War 
General and Chief Engineer and Builder of the Union Pacific Rail 
road Major General Grenville Dodge. He inspired me to enter 
the civil engineering field. He was a tremendous teacher. He 
taught me how to handle various survey equipment, etc. I could 
read a slide rule by the time I was 10 or 12 years old. 
His home was a three story house similar to our old Governor s 
Mansion. He would spend hours on the top deck watching the 


enlargement progress of the Union Pacific Bridge across the 
Missouri River. Council Bluffs, Iowa, is the Eastern terminal 
of the Union Pacific. On a cold day in January 1916, General 
Dodge died - I owe him much. I graduated from high school at 
the age of 15. 

Rowland: And this is in the Midwest Iowa? 

Allen: Yes. 

Joining the Marine Corps 

Allen: Shortly after my graduation I decided that I wanted to see a 

little bit of the world - so I ran away from home. Fibbing on 
my correct age, I enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps. I bounced 
around the so called Banana Republics - Santa Domingo, Haiti and 
Nicaragua. There as a Constabulary Officer on detached duty" 
with the Marines I was introduced to Civil Government. It was 
good duty. As a member I would draw my pay and allowances as 
an enlisted Marine and full commissioned officers pay of the 
country being served. 

Here again, another General officer, Smedley D. Butler, U.S.M.C. 
observed my scholastic record and engineering experience and urged 
me to take further advanced courses in that field - which I did. 
So my engineering both the structural and civil I received 
out of the Marine Corps Institute or the service schools. Then 
later, of course, I took extended courses at the University of 
Southern California and the California Institute of Technology. 

Rowland: Now your California experience, when did that begin? 

Allen: Well, it began the first time about 1911. I came out on a visit, 
and being a kid around the farm, could handle horses. My uncle by 

marriage owned a restaurant which was called "The Five Mile House" 
on what is now the corner of Crenshaw and Adams. In those day it 
was surrounded by hay fields. 

Rowland: In -- ? 

Allen: In Los Angeles. I used to park the horses and carriages. The 
French waiters were scared to death of the horses. They also 
were madder than hell at me because I would pick up better tips 
than they. Because I had a little racket going there, I don t 
mind telling you. I d go out and curry those horses down and 
shine them up for those people. 

I struck the fancy of Mrs. Clara Baldwin Stocker - Lucky Baldwin s 
oldest daughter by his first marriage. Her mother had passed away 
crossing the plains to California. Mrs. Stocker had a large 
rambling ranch house up on Baldwin Hills. She later willed this 
home to a Sister s Nursing Order which cared for terminally sick 
women. Actress Clara Bow died there. She used to call me to 
come over and help handle her driving horses because she had ob 
tained matched hackney s from Allendale that my grandfather had 
raised for her. 

So anyway, she was quite a character, but a good friend and always 
good for a $20 tip. 

Roots of Political Involvement; Joining the Democratic Party 

Rowland: Now, your political involvement in California, when did that begin? 

Allen: Well, that began about 1920, I think. When I came back here - back 
to California - I came back from Haiti. See, I was in the con 
stabulary of Haiti, on detached duty from the Marine Corps. So I 

came back and had pulled mail guard here in 21. 

Rowland: And where was this? In Los Angeles? 

Allen: Los Angeles. And then they sent me over to be the Assistant 

Provost Marshal and the Provost Marshal got sick and I was stuck 
with his job as well as mine. Los Angeles County had a district 
attorney by the name of Tom Woolwine, probably one of the most 
fearless men that ever served in that capacity in southern 
California or anywhere. He asked me to do a little moonlighting 
by assisting in an investigation. He was having some problems 
with a noted comedian by the name of Charles Chaplin. What 
Woolwine was after was to nail this guy, Chaplin, on statutory 
rape. The girl, Lita Grey, was only 15 years old and pregnant 
at that time. The girl s mother took her over to Arizona and 
Chaplin married the gal. Some of these "Movie Mothers" would 
never win a Mother s Day award from me. 

Lita was the mother of Chaplin s oldest sons. Upon being married, 
the district attorney dropped further investigation and I had made 
a valued and lasting friend in Tom Woolwine. 

But anyhow, I happened to be a firm believer that good government 
knows no party lines. You have to register some way - Republican, 
Democrat and non-partisan, but I ve always fancied myself more of 
a chosen disciple of Jefferson. The basic philosophy of Jefferson, 
that a public servant is one who serves the people and does not 
rule them. Another, of course, is his "Those who are the least 
governed " 

Rowland: are governed the best, you mean? 

Allen: That s right. Are governed best. A public servant serves the 
people, not rules them. So I got appointed to the Democratic 


convention here in 20, when you could have held it up here in 
Sacramento in a telephone booth. 

Rowland: Did your family have a history of association with the Democratic 
party, or at least voting Democratic? 

Allen: Well, my mother s folks were all Republican. My dad was the only 
one out of the family that was a Democrat. His brother, Henry, 
was governor of Kansas and United States Senator - Republican. 
Wait a minute. I don t mean to call him "Uncle Henry." Hell, 
he was a cousin of my father s. What am I talking about? 
So anyway, now we re up past 1920. During that time, of course, 
I pulled duty in China. Then I got bounced down into the second 
Nicaraguan campaign, and I got banged up a little down there when 
I was in the Guardia Nacional Constabulary Service. We Marines 
were assigned to training and providing emergency services such 
as fire and police, train their militia and conduct the 1930 

And incidentally, I knew the grandfather of this President Somoza 
that s in trouble. I was one of his tutors in infantry weapons 
at the military "colegio," College of Nicaragua. 
I was acting Chief Surveyor in practically all of the principal 
cities and villages of that Republic. It was in this country I 
was introduced to civil government again. I was stationed in 
some of these places that you see that the TV newscasters cannot 
pronounce, like Estelli. They say Estelly, but it s Estill Lee. 
During 1934, the 16 years veteran incumbent of the 63rd Assembly 
District, the late Honorable Willard F. Badham (grand uncle of 
the present Orange County Congressman, Bob Badham) lived across 
the street from me. He said it looked like he was going to be 

defeated because he was a Republican, and the Democrats, under 
Roosevelt, were riding high. So he wanted me to run. 

Rowland: This ia in Los Angeles. 

Allen: In Los Angeles in 34, and I said no, I wouldn t as I d been 

around too much politics, and I had seen all and wanted none of 

it. So I refused. At that time, I was active in the Veterans 

of Foreign Wars down there. I was commander of a post and so 


A fellow by the name of Ralph L. Welsh did beat Badhara, and then 

Welsh almost got licked on his next time up. So, the business 

people came to me again, including Welsh, and it was not the first time 

that the Republicans and Democrats joined forces. In those days 

we had cross-filing. As a result I was elected on both tickets , 

and for several terms thereafter was unopposed . 


Struggles with the State Relief Administration 

Allen: I came up here (Sacramento) and all hell broke loose between Culbert 
Olson and myself. Unfortunately, in my opinion, the voters had put 
a round peg in a square hole and a square peg in a round hole when 
they elected Culbert Olson as governor. He was a senator; he was 
more of a legislator. Moat of this woe and grief was woven by some 
of the "Palace Guards" he surrounded himself with. Watergate was 
not the first bugging event that was engineered by public officers 
and employees. 

A "goon" that had been trained in Germany was a "wire man" or 
"bugman." By aides in Governor Olson s office all of us legislators 

were bugged without regards to friend or foe of the governor. 

(without his knowledge) 
Speaker Gordon Garland had several of them planted An his hotel rooms 


and one in a niost despicable manner in. his bedroom. 
Rowland: Did he want to act autonomously of the legislature? 

Allen: Well, he wanted his own way. That s all there was to it. Of 

course, he was the first ^ with Democratic registration in 

forty four years, and some of the "palace guards" that he sur 
rounded himself with wanted power. He had one person that was 
sort of a salvation, and that s Stanley Mosk, who s a Supreme 
Court Justice today, who was Olson s secretary and really decent. 
But he had other cats in there that huh! Oh boy! The repu 
tation was that they would steal Christ off the cross and go back 
and get the nails. 

Rowland: The battle with Olson was primarily over the State Relief Admini 
stration, wasn t it? 

started < 

Allen: It really *^ with Olson s breakdown. Almost a week before the 

day Olson was inaugurated his people had loaded him with so many 
details and in order to keep him going, various types of drugs 
were administered without proper medical supervision. These drugs 
were given to him by an attendant of the governor s oldest son and 
his executive secretary - a real wacko. Olson required an attendant 
around the clock. The breakdown took place at the old fairgrounds 
during the state police of ficers barbecue. 

It is well to recall he inherited the State Relief Administration - 
a real can of worms. With it, tremendous pressure by his staff 
and job seekers to continue its operation as Gov. Merrian had done. 
The damndest patronage bureau ever seen before or since in this 
state. To enlarge its scope they attempted to have bills introduced 


to declare relief a matter of right without question. By doing 
away with the declared purpose in the law. "Public Relief was 
a matter of public safety of citizens who were in dire need and 
destitution due to unemployment and other circumstances not due 
to their own misconduct." 

When we hired Rollin Vandergrift, a noted economist and the 
second Director of Finance in the states history, he found a 
fantastic and disgraceful cost out of every dollar appropriated. 
Due to some of the frills only 38 cents out of the dollar reached 
down to those who needed it. 

It is well to remember the governor and legislature had inherited 
$36 million deficit. 

They had a gang in there that had these relief people organized, 
and against their wishes in the main the organizers were even 
taking the bread and butter right off these poor devils tables. 
Rowland: Are you referring to the alleged Communist union groups that were -- 
Allen: V e ll, it was a sort of a group of high binding fakers - leaches. 

Rowland: Workers Alliance? 

Allen: That s right/ the SCMWA [pronounces it "scum-wa" ], the State, 

County and Municipal Workers of America and so forth and so on. 
But those guys were -- hell, they weren t Communists. Those guys 
were freebooters. As far as I m concerned, I mean their philosophy 
they may have espoused the philosophy of the Communists, but those 
guys were in there, you know, to get what they could get. They had 
those relief recipients baking cakes with the free flour and other 
ingredients that was being given to them. The so called union 
organizers which the A.F.L. and C.I.O. disowned were making these 
people come to them in different meetings and bring these cakes, 


and they d sell them and so on and so on, and the so called SCMWA 
leaders would pocket the money. They were robbing these people. 
These people were hungry. They wanted jobs. Most of the people 
on relief were respectable people, and they found it an ordeal, 
a shock to their system. Hell, they d always worked for a living 
and would love to go ahead if work for them could be provided. 

Rowland: Now, those early years of the legislature, there were some in 
dividuals in there who became prominent later on in the Goodwin 
Knight - Pat Brown years, and one of them was Hugh Burns. 

Allen: That s right. 

Rowland: You remember Hugh Burns? 

Allen: Yes, I do. 

Rowland: As a freshman assemblyman he probably came in the same time as you. 

Allen: No, Hugh was in one term before I came in. He was elected in 1936 
and I in 1938. 

Rowland: 1936 I think he came in. 

Allen: Or 36. Yes, he was here (Sacramento) two ahead of me. He was an 

Rowland: What do you remember about Hugh in those early years? Was he a 
liberal Democrat, or 

Allen: No, at that time he was feeling his way along. And he wasn t a guy 
that liked to shake things up. He was a sort of wit and sort of 
a Will Rogers type of a guy, but he wasn t about ready to shake 
things up. It wasn t until later 

Rowland: Do you remember him being a particularly ambitious freshman assem 

Allen: He would work, but he wasn t an eager beaver. He was one of these 
kind of mature people, had been a businessman down in Fresno that 


got swept up in this thing called politics. Hugh was never a 
liberal. He was never an ultra-conservative until later years. 
He didn t get into this un-american activities committee until 
Yorty had got with it and dropped it. And Hugh I think that 
many people, even the liberals, had respect for Hugh because he 
was honest and he was fair. 

The Un-American Activities Committee; Prinicipal Personalities 

Rowland: Do you remember the un-american activities committee? 

Allen: Oh, do I. I will never forget the night that Sam Yorty and Jack 
Tenney came by my house and asked for me to intercede for them 
with the other assembly leaders. They wanted to organize a little 
Dies committee and investigate un-american activities in Calif 
ornia, as Sam and Jack had been identified as ultra liberals. 
Loading the committee with conservative members they received 
their wish. Most everyone of their meetings were the funniest 
sessions ever held. 

For instance - either Jack or Sam would ask a witness if he had 
attended a meeting on a certain night that could be charged as 
being Communistic inclined. The witness would reply, "I remember 
it well because you were the principal speaker." I must add those 
two really went to work on that subject. A former member of that 
committee said, "I am ready to believe a leopard can change its 
spots." Once these dudes were described as being red as a fire 
truck and twice as loud about it. 

Rowland: Do you remember Richard E. Combs? 

Allen: Yes, I remember Combs very well. Combs was an investigator and 


you wouldn t interfere with him. As a 

member of the legislature, you could go to him and he would give 
you limited information. But in the meantime, if you had in 
formation, you gave it to Combs. Now, Combs operated out of a 
home up here. I forget where it was. 

Rowland: In Three Rivers, California. 

Allen: And he was a guy that played them real close up to the vest. You 
never knew what was going to happen. 

Rowland: Was he a very secretive man? I ve heard various reports on that. 
I mean, I never met him. 

Allen: Oh, yes. He was outgoing for various sundry things, but when it 
came to this other business of his, he was very secretive. He 
once impressed me by saying, "Well, you know, you ve got to move 
slow in a case like this. The lives of many people have been 
blasted by thoughtless and unkind and untrue things. I don t 
want to destroy any man or woman, if in my power to prevent it." 
He told me that one time, in a sense, he could be a tough cookie. ; :! 

Rowland: interesting period. I had done my master s thesis on the Burns 
Committee and did quite a bit of research and had interviewed Burns. 
I wanted to interview Richard Combs, Dut he didn t want to sit 
down and talk about it. 

Allen: No, he wouldn t. 

Rowland: He wanted to put it all behind him. 

Allen: But you see, here s a funny thing how that thing got started. 

Rowland: The Tenney Committee, in 1941? 

Allen: Yorty started it, and Tenney too. Yorty had had some sort of a 

break with the governor, and I don t wonder, because this governor 
Olson had guys going around to blackmail you, or as some believe, 


Sam got ore at the liberal elements including Gov. Olson for 
endorsing another person for Congress in the 1940 elections. 
California had gained new seats due to the 1940 census and a 
quick certification. 

This was at the time Russia and Germany were allies. The liberals 
being anti-British. Their slogan was "The Yanks are not coaming. 
One red drop of a young Americans blood is more valuable than all 
of Europe." This appeared on their candidates bill boards. Much 
later to be changed to we demand a second front now when Germany 
gave Russia the shaft. 

So some bill boards in the district read "Isolation has failed - 
stop Hitler now - elect Sam Yorty to the House of Representatives." 
This was the pro-British candidates answer. When war broke out, 
Sam answered the call. 

Rowland: Tell us more about the bugging of Gordon Garland. 

Allen: Oh yes, yes. Garland was not the only one bugged. And another 

thing. The governor s son, "Dickie Babe" came to me one time and 

invited me to the corner office. The governor said, "What if your 

wife would find out from us that you were over here with a , 

what would she say if she found out you were over here in a motel 

with a woman, having illicit relations with her?" 

I said, "My wife? That little Dutchman of mine would probably say, 

"Oh, that poor thing." 

And I said, "Now, you old son of a bitch, if you think you re going 

to pull something on me like you pulled on another member of the 

legislature, I m going to make you have to take your - ." 

Rowland: This is Yorty you re talking to? 

Allen: I m talking to the governor now! 


I said, "I ll make you take off your shirt to use the bathroom, 
because I ll kick your ass clear up around your ears." See, I 
was just out of the Marine Corps and out of the engineering field, 
and I didn t care about being up here (Sacramento). There was 
nobody going to push me around. I weighed 245 pounds, and I was 
in damn good health. 

Now, Hugh Burns will tell you, if you ever talk to him, you might 
ask him about the little dissertation that I unloaded on the 
governor one night when he called me a son of a bitch. I just 
curled his hair. 

Founding the Economy Block 

Rowland: Was Hugh part of that "economy block?" 

Allen: No, he wasn t part of the "economy block." He wasn t with it, and 
he wasn t against us. The "economy block" was founded by sheer 
accident. It should be remembered that although the civil service 
had recently been placed into the State Constitution. Bills to 
augment the measure had not been passed by the legislature. Some 
of the department heads were seeking some gimmick which would 
freeze them into their positions. 

They came up with the idea of putting Governor Olson on the spot 
and then siding with the legislature. Their method was to help him 
by making up the two year budget. They did and he delivered a 
budget that not only had a deficit of 36 million, but one that 
showed an 85 million dollar deficit. Also, in order to insure 
their little scheme, they would inject partisan politics into the 
It must be recalled that the state budget was adopted every two 


years. The turning point came in 1948 when Gov. Earl Warren 

faced the prospect of a billion dollar budget. Before his term 

ended in 1950, he invented the yearly budget. This gave the 

appearance of cutting state spending in half. He got away with 


When Gov. Hiram Johnson gave the people of the state the vehicle 

for clean government non-partisanships, the early legislators 

adopted that premise in their deliberations. Those bungling 

bureaucrats thought/ could obtain the services of Assemblyman 

C. Don Field to set up in a sub j-osa Fashion such a partisan 
move, because Don Field, through his fourteen years, was a most 
respected member. 

Rowland: What was he active in? 

Allen: He was without doubt one of the most active members of the 
Assembly. Also the most productive in legislative matters. 

Rowland: He was an assemblyman? 

Allen: Yes. And some of the Republican party bureaucrats were putting 
the pressure on him to become Mr. Republican in the assembly, 
in an undercover manner, and he wouldn t do it. Don Field was 
never one to break the faith. 

Rowland: Now, he was the head of the transportation committee, you said? 

Allen: No, he had a transportation firm of his own. He s dead now. 
With two exceptions, the whole Field family died young. 
The late Assemblywoman Jeanette Daley of San Diego, Assemblyman 
Seth Millington of Gridley, deceased, and myself were having dinner 
at the Old Sacramento Hotel. A young messenger brought a package 
to the table. It had only one name on it - Don 1 . 
While waiting for our food I opened the package or large envelope 


and looked over the contents. They contained a transmittal 
letter showing a part of the conspiracy to raise the budget and 
kick the governor in the teeth. 

The late Judge Ben Rosenthal , then assemblyman from Los Angeles, 
and his wife were setting at the next table. He was chairman of 
the Assembly Ways and Means Committee. After careful examination 
Ben said, "My God, this is terrible. I am glad they mistook you 

Just then Don Field and his wife came in. We invited them to 
share the table with us and showed him the material. Just about 
this time the same messenger came in handing me another package. 
This is the balance of the material for you Mr. Field. We ate our 
dinner, received permission to use a conference room and preceded 
to call other legislators. We did not have many as this being 
around eight p.m. many were in committee. After going over the 
documents, President pro tern of the Senate turned to Senator Tony 
DeLapp, Chairman, Senate Finance Committee and said, "Why these 
bastards have been pulling the wool over our eyes all these years. 
I suggest that you registered Democrats take this over to the 
governor and tell him he will have our full cooperation to clean 
house on these S.O.B. s." 

So we went over to see the governor, and I guess the governor 
was engaged in some of his extra-curricular deals. He was in a 
foul mood. You know, they said that one time they took a blood 
test and they found out he could ve been Erroll Flynn s father 
and so forth and so on. But this guy likad his ladies. 

Rowland: Olson? 

Allen: Olson, yes. According to the grapevine around Sacramento he treated 


his wife shabbily. And of course, as you know, he was an avowed 
atheist. Later the public found that out when he appeared before 
a committee against a measure using in "God We Trust" introduced 
by Assemblyman tfiiliam Bonelli. But I knew he was an atheist. 
Senator King, from Utah, told me that his cousin , Culbert, was 
an atheist. If you go back to the 1939 Assembly Journal you ll find a 
communication the governor sent to a fellow Jeff Kibers who was a 
Olson hatchet man. He instructed Kibers to clean out (Jeff was 
supposed to be a Commie) the holdovers in the State Relief 
Administration, the experts like Lanigan and Slattery and Jinny 
Reese and two others. 

Rowland: "Clean them out" in what sense? 

Allen: Oh, get them out of the S.R.A. because Olson said in his letter 
that these Catholic kids, they have their philosophy and they 
won t stand for our philosophy, because of the Catholic Church. 
We had a hell of a time on the floor on that one. Asserablyman- 
Dr. Jesse Randolph Kellums, a great evangilist and high in the 
Church of Christ and a Republican and my minister went to 
Catholic legislators like Eddie O Day, Gallagher, Maloney and 
others and said, "Now, just cool it. We re going to take care of 
this Olson." And boy, we did. 

Following Bill Riche s suggestion, Jeanette Daley, Ben Rosenthal , 
Seth Millington and I went down to the governor s office to see 
Olson. He was anything but cordial. He was arrogant, belligerent 
and egotistical enough to believe his budget was perfect. He 
called Jeanette Daley a "meddling old menopause Minnie." Jeanette 
had been around construction work and could handle the same kind 
of profanity, as I did, very beautifully. Then he turned his 


anger on me and the two of us started cussing him and we really 
told him off. We told him what we had done so he would not back 
up and he told Ben Rosenthal, "You re not going to let them change 
a God damn comma in that thing (the budget)." And the old man 
said, "Did you ever see anything in the legislative halls like 
that? Where party turncoats would go against their party leader?" 
I said, "Did you ever see horseshit in a garage?" That was my 
parting shot at the governor. We went out of there. 
We were at that time, by the way, $36 million in the red, and 

operating the state on about $220 million a year. I had believed 


Gov. Olson. He asked me when we ^ running to be the chairman of 

a committee - to obtain competent advisors on the budget. I 
showed him the fiscal study by two reknown actuaries which was 
given me. He appeared to be pleased and greatly impressed with it. 
I said, "by the way, Governor, if I were you, I would open my re 
marks, Here is the fiscal fiction of the year, the biannual fiscal 
fiction, which is called the governor s budget, but it s just a 
compilation of figures by department heads, and I would suggest you 
legislators go into them and dig them a little bit deeper " 
Now, I took that same position with the senate, which he did. He 
said, "That s fine. That s fine." But his Palace Guard (staff) 
got to the old man, they were giving him goof balls to keep him 
awake, and they were giving him nembutol at night and boozing him 
up to get him to sleep. The old man just wasn t himself. I mean, 
these guys were acting without medical advice. These Palace Guard 
clowns almost killed Gov. Olson. This became known when he 
collapsed at the Peace Officer s event. 
Rowland: Olson, you mean. 


Allen: Oh, yes. He took a dive - passed out - at the state fair grounds 
where the peace officers had a traditional barbecue up here 
(Sacramento) for fifty years or more for the incoming governors. 
And so the old man took the occasion of the Peace Officers 
Association party to spring Tom Mooney and Billings. 
And that was about like taking the East Side rapist out here 
(Sacramento) and introducing him to all of his victims at a 
breakfast in his honor. So anyway, that was one of the deals. 
So with the governor being incapacitated but present in the 
state and the scuffle in the governor s office for power, it was 
opportune for bipartisan members of the legislature to get 
together. Jeanette Daley, Seth Millington, Gordon Garland and 
myself first approached the 41 registered Democrats of the 
assembly. Six others - Hon. Clinton Fulcher, Chester Gannon, 
Earl Desmond, Clyde Watson, Rodney Turner and Ernest 0. Voigt 
responded. Gordon Garland and myself are the surviving two of 
the 10. The 36 Itepublicans joined with the 10 Democrats. 
During the 1939 session, and by holding out, we line itemed the 
budget limiting expenditures for that year. 

At the extraordinary session, which convened January 29, 1940, 
and adjourned sine die 313 days later, the coalition of 10 
Democrats and thirty six Republicans elected the Hon. Gordon 
Garland [Tulare Rancher] Speaker. The Republicans insisted the 
10 Democrats furnish the leadership. We prevailed on them to 
allow the assembly to return to the premise of the noa-partisan 
way --the same as the senate. The Hon. Gardiner Johnson was 
elected Speaker pro temoore . 
The assembly rapidly reorganized the 54 committees with some 


chairmanship changes. Task forces probed into every department 
and function of state government. The State Employment Depart 
ment was ordered to find jobs for the employables on relief. The 
direct dole was markedly cut down through this method and the people 
were happier. Two minor, but historic, items bears retelling at 
this point. There was noted a item titled "misc. "in the budget of 
some $300,000 yearly. It was an accumulation of interest on state 
warrants issued by the legislature during the first sessions in 
1849. The original total principal was in the $20,000 range. Among 
these warrants was one for a Rock of California Granite - now at the 
200 ft level of the Washington Monument. The warrants went on 
immediate call and were finally paid off in 1946. Thus after some 
90 years the rock in the Washington Monument was paid for. The 
total cost - nineteen thousand plus. I will pay $20,000 for three 
hundred thousand anytime. 

The other is an example of squander by open purchase without control. 
One of our committees found S.R.A. had purchased over a quarter of 
a million surplus blankets from an army navy surplus vendor for a 
single mens camp system that had displaced less than 100 men - 
keeping them in rural out-of-the-way places away from job opportunities 
in private employment. 

The committee found several of such purchases in process, amounting 
to well over two million dollars. They were brought to a screeching 
halt. Measures were taken to buy all items through the State Pur 
chasing Agent. 

It was thru the diligent work of the legislative task forces that 
the deficit was eradicated and the budget showed a surplus on June 
30, 1941. That is a part of the history of the economy bloc of 1939 
to 1941. 



Background to Senate Reapportionment 

Rowland: Should we return to reapportionment? 

Allen: But in getting back to reapportionment, Jess Unruh came to me 

and he said, "Look, you were back East to the Conference of Mayors 
and Councilmen. How serious does this matter of legislative 
representation look? When you were city councilman I understand 
that at the 1947 convention of the National League of Cities 
there was just a hell of a lot of dissention and law suits 
being contemplated." 

It wasn t just dissention. It was real open rebellion by the 
various state legislatures on account of this limitation on 
present apportionment. But I told him that I thought Reynolds 
versus Sims was the one case that alerted him and other California 
legislators the most. 

Rowland: Now, when did you first hear of a move to reapportion the 

state senate? Was that during the Bonelli initiative in 1959? 

Allen: Oh, no, no, no. The first time I heard it was in 1941 by 

Mayor Fletcher Bowron, Mayor of Los Angeles. He was red hot about it, 
Where it came up was at the League of Cities at Miami, Florida. 


at the national convention down there. Each annual convention 
delegates brought that subject matter up while I was representing 
the City of Los Angeles. I was chairman of the finance committee 
for the Los Angeles City Council then. This was 1944-45 and we 
heard many speakers speak on that matter. There was a drum fire 
of discontentment at each league meeting thereafter and it was 

Rowland: In 1945? 

Allen: Oh, yes, and earlier. 

Rowland: And they were speaking about the California Senate and other 

Allen: Oh, the other states. No, no, not only California, they were 

talking about the very thing nationwide. You see, Baker was not 
a Californian (Baker v. Carr. Tennessee) (Gray v. Sanders and 
Reynold v. Sims - both Georgia). 

Rowland: Right. They were talking about the state legislatures being 
reapportioned by arbitrary designations. 

Allen: Per se. Right. So I came back, and of course Mayor Bowron, he 
was one of the early advocates of this as well as Sam Yorty of 
Los Angeles. 

Rowland: Who was he? 

Allen: Mayor Bowron, Fletcher Bowron was mayor of the City of Los Angeles. 
He used to get into fights with the power structure of the senate, 
Ralph Swing and all of those guys. You know, somebody wrote a 
song, "It don t mean a thing if you ain t got that swing," and that 
really set right with Ralph Swing. He was probably one of the most 
productive legislators I ve ever seen in my life. 

Ralph Swing, from San Bernardino was probably one of the "gifted ones. 
You know, if you went home some night, and you thought you had got 


the best of him, you took off your shoes and they were full of 
blood, you juat knew that old Ralph Swing had cut your throat. 
Well anyhow, getting back to this deal, Jess said, "Now this is 
going to be a rough hustle, but I ve got to depend on somebody 
that isn t going to lose their head." And he said, "By the way, 
you just lost your job down in the Los Angeles City Council to 
reapportionment." See, they have to reapportion down there every 
four years. That s in the charter. So when I first went to the 
city council from the legislature in 1947, we had eight and a half 
council districts south of Washington Boulevard, and then the 
districts began moving. Four years later (1951) it was found that 
the San Fernando Valley was entitled to only one district. 
However, the startling rapid growth of the valley showed we had 
to move four districts to the valley in 1956, and one of them 
was mine, because of cutting up my district with the freeways -- 
the Olympic and the Harbor and those other freeways they took 
a hell of a lot of people out of my district. So mine was the 
lowest, and this is what the court said it had to go. So okay. 
Due to the resignation of the assemblyman in my district, I 
returned to the Sacramento scene by being elected in the special 
election of 1956. So knowing that, Jess said, "You ll be in there 
as chairman of the committee." 

Rowland: Did you work closely with Jess previously? Were you a Jess Unruh 

Allen: Oh, no, no, no, no. Not an Unruh supporter per se. I ve been very 

independent over the years. I was the guy that gave him, incidentally, 
that "Big Daddy" name. But of course, that was after Daddy Warbucks. 
So the press took it like "The cat on a hot tin roof." 


So anyway, in getting back to this situation, we sort of an 
ticipated Bonelli, (Frank Bonelli, not William Bonelli) 
had taken umbrage with some treatment that he had received at 
the hands of the senate. 

Rowland: Paricularly at the northern or rural 

Allen: Oh yes. It was northern senators. And of course, I always get 
a kick out of this, that they used to call the northern senators 
the "cow county senators," and would you believe it? We had 
more cows in Los Angeles County at the time than they had in any 
other part of the state or part of the states combined. The 
Artesia, Downey section down in Los Angeles County was the 
biggest dairy railkshed in the world. 

But nevertheless, they had offended Bonelli, and Frank really was 
angry. So when he became a member of the board of supervisors, he 
and Bowron got together. They went out, and, of course, this Phill 
Silvers jumped on board. Phil) if you ll go down and look the 
record over, he was always filing citizen suits against the city 
for something or other. If h recovered anything 
the court awarded him compensation. 

So then, in 1964, that was when Jess put me on the committee. Then 
it was the understanding -- I took that committee with the under 
standing that because of its severity, we might be under the gun 
of contempt of the U.S. Supreme Court. We would have to walk a 
chalk line with the courts that there could be no funny business 
nor could be no manipulation like there was reported in 1960, 
which had its basis in some who did not get their way. 
Now one other thing that was brought up, I have always felt like 
I was something out of the "Godfather." I was a hit man for the 


U.S. Supreme Court. I never enjoyed the job of reapportionment. 

Rowland: What do you mean by "hit man?" 

Allen: That I murdered the senate for a while. I think you ll find in 
here some article about my feelings: the loss of expertise in 
the senate. It should have been phased out over a given period 
of time. 

Rowland: You re talking about the results of reapportionment, in the 66 
election, when so many senators lost their seats? 

Allen: That s right. The loss of expertise was tragic. 

Rowland: Well, going back to this, then, what was your relationship with 
Earl Warren? Did you have a good relationship with him, or was 
there any connection there between the Warren court and the fact 
that you were accused of being the "hit man" of the senate? 

Allen: I was never accused. It was my own thought of being the "hit man" 
for the Supreme Court. "Hit man" is the designation of a hired 
killer. Well, there isn t any more connection than the fact that 
when I served up here (Sacramento) with Earl Warren, he only had 
one time he got a veto, and that was when we needed sewage money 
badly. And I went to Earl and I said, "Jesus, Governor, I m going 
to have to override your veto. We ll have to vote for it coming 
from Southern California. I can t get away from it in Los Angeles." 
"Well," he said, "I was going to appoint you supervisor, but if 
you can t support me, I can t support you." I said, "All right." 
Then of course he got Don Field. He knocked Don Field out of 
ever being lieutenant governor because Field was the author of the 
bill and led the fight to override the only veto Warren ever ex 
perienced. But I showed the governor he had the money. 
But he was too damn busy going around creating little puddles 


around the state where he could chip money here and chip money 
there and chip money into these different areas and give these 
people assignments that a lot of them are stuck with today that 
they shouldn t have. Years later Warren would tell the people 
of Los Angeles and Orange County how he had saved their beaches 
and tourist economy from sewage disposal. Then in the north 
vetoing the "Christmas Tree Bill" as he called it, thus pre 
serving the state from spend thrift acts of the legislature. 
And it s just like him going from the biennial session to the 
annual session. You know why that was? 

Rowland: No. When was this done? 

Allen: 1948. To avoid for the next few period of years -- he once had 
this gigantic surplus, or "rainy day fund" as he called it, that 
we guys had accumulated for him by the action of the economy 
block. He didn r t want at any time to be known as the governor 
that ushered in the billion dollar budget in the State of 
California. There s your story. That s the secret of that one. 
Now, we come in with this situation here. 

Rowland: So you didn t necessarily have a good working relationship with 
Earl Warren, but it was -- 

Allen: I had a good working I was on the War Council with him. I 

was on the governor s War Council. When the legislature took it 
over from Olson, Warren was a member of the War Council as the 
attorney general. And he was caught in two places here. He was 
the attorney general, and he was the governor s attorney. And 
there were times when he couldn t speak out, and I know he should 
have. And we had set up a deal to take the heat off of Warren 
and I went back to Gordon Garland, and Ralph Swing went back to 


the senate and passed a bill to accomplish this. You see, the 
lieutenant governor is expressly prohibited from calling martial 
law as long as the governor is in the state. But we found that 
a member of the legislature could do that under a war powers deal. 
So everyone that belonged to the War Council Jeanette Daley 
and myself, Fred Weybrett 

Tom Quinn, Ralph Swing -- from the senate side would go in and -- 
Senator Tony DeLap, chairman of the senate finance committee for 
years, the other senate members would be available in any cata 
strophic event if communications with the governor were broken 
down, but anyhow, we could go in, in our areas of legislative 
representation, to carry out the requests of the local sheriff 
and declare martial law if needed. 

When war broke out, by the way, the FBI stepped in and picked up 
about eight of the guys that Olson had appointed on his disaster 
council, which was a forerunner of the war council. One guy had 
been close to Benito Mussolini, Italian dictator, "II Duce" and 
got awards from him, and various other things. An Olson cabinet 
member was prominent with pro-German views - the German-American 
Bund and would-be storm troopers. They had conducted many meetings 
of the Bund during 1939-40-41. He had been a guest of Hitler at 
the Olympic Games and different little things like that. The FBI 
knew their connections. On Monday, December 8, 1941, in an extra 
ordinary meeting at the state building in Los Angeles, Mrs. 

Eleanor Roosevelt and Mayor/ LaGuardia were sent out by the 

president to offer any assistance California would need. 

Before that meeting opened, 2 members of the FBI slipped handcuffs 

on the turkey who had trained with the gestapo and had planted the 


dictaphone on speaker Garland under the supervision of Philbrick 
and Charley Henderson, Olson staff members. 

Anyway, the FBI turned around and turned this over to told 
Earl Warren he was in charge of all this activity and took it 
out of the hands of Culbert Olson. That is, they thought the 
attorney general s office could do it. And I told the FBIJ not 
under our state constitution, you can t. 

So they gave the legislative committee members the responsibilityi 
which in ray opinion was just as unconstitutional. So anyhow, 
Roosevelt hated Olson s guts with a passion, because he had 
helped defeat his old buddy of WW I , in the Woodrow Wilson 
cabinet, U. S. Senator William Gibbs McAdoo, who until his 
defeat in 1938 was one of Roosevelt s senate floor leaders. 
And Olson had said some things about Roosevelt that Roosevelt 
hadn t forgotten. Bang! So the result was that there was an 
issue of a proclamation. So we would sit down, we would assume 
such activities under presidential war powers, and the governor 
would try to crowd out Earl Warren and who under state law is 
the governor s attorney. And I d speak up and say, "Look, you re 
out of order. That isn t the subject matter which we are here 
for today. You re not sticking with the agenda, Governor." 
And then he and I would get into a fight. And he d forget all 
about needling Earl Warren. He d take it on me. So, Earl liked 
me pretty well. 

Rowland: Now, going back to the Bonelli initiatives of I960 and 62, why 
were they defeated? 

Allen: They were defeated simply because the people didn t want to break 
the word. That s the word that I got. 


Rowland: "Break the word?" 

Allen: Well, that they had in 1931 See, they never had decennial 
re apportionment in 1920, until Ted Craig, recently deceased, 
took it over and put the Craig Bill in 1931. So they set up 
this federal deal of senate reapportionment, and they kept the 
old, so-called "federal spook" thing, see. 

But Bonelli was reasonable. His deal was not to completely 
reapportion. It was based on a percentage. In other words, 
southern California would get more representation, but it 
wouldn t achieve any where near the one man, one vote 1 

Rowland: I believe, if my recollection is correct, that the first Bonelli 
initiative of 1960 was to divide the state senate representation 
by the Tehachapi mountains. You would have twenty state senators 
from southern California and twenty state senators from northern 

Allen: Yes. That s right. His was a north-south division, using the 
Tehachapi mountains, which we have always used for a division 
between north and eouth. 

Rowland: Now, was there any third house support against the Bonelli 

initiative, do you recall? Did key leaders in the senate rally 
third house -- 

Allen: There was probably some contributions made, but they weren t overt 
contributions at all. 

Rowland: Do you recall oil, for instance, getting involved in the campaign 
against the Bonelli initiatives? 

Allen: No, I really don t. 

Rowland: Standard Oil, from George Miller s district. 

32 - 

Allen: Well, of course we had a hell of a big Standard Oil holdings 
down in Los Angeles, far greater than the storage tanks that 
Senator George Miller had in his district. Also his boyhood 
chum, Al Shults, chief legislative counsel for Standard Oil 
and a truly great lawyer in his field 

Of course, you see, George Miller and Al Shults were class 
mates schoolmates together. And they were closer than close. 
Now there may have been contributions as a token of respect, but 
by and large, I know that many of the oil people stayed away 
from it, for fear they d have another Sharkey battle on their 

Rowland: "Sharkey battle?" 

Allen: Yes. You know, conservation. 


Rowland: I don t quite understand what -- 

Allen: Well, the major oil companies didn t want to take out any of the 
California oil. They wanted to go abroad and buy it. And 
several times, Senator Will R. Sharkey had a bill on the what 
they called the "Sharkey amendment" to do just that, many years 

Then the major oil people had the Atkinson oil bill, similar to 
the Sharkey bill, that the independents knocked down in 1940. 
Then they had another one in 1956 -- as I used to say, a battle 
between the billionaires and the millionaires. 

Rowland: Ir. 1956, proposition 4, that is? 

Allen: Yes. So anyhow, if they had, I would have noticed it. I would 
have known it. 

Rowland: Any other prominent third house -- 

Allen: None that I know of, except maybe some agricultural, like Clarence 


Salycr, known as old "Cyclops" because he had one eye - a large 
land holder and grower along with the associated fanners known 
as the Montgomery Street Plow Boys or Plow Jockey s and others 
of the agriculture crowd did not want to lose the rural power 
enjoyed by them under the so called federal system - always did 
battle against any changes. 

Rowland: The Farm Bureau, the Chamber of Commerce? 

Allen: Well, the Chamber of Commerce didn t want anybody rocking their 
boat. I would have to go back and look at the people who wrote 
the arguments, and then I could tell you. I had all of that at 
one time under study. I think I carry some of it here in my 
book, too. 

Rowland: That s the Legislative Source Book. 

Allen: Yes. So anyhow, in getting back to this situation, then the next 
attempt that came up, Bonelli had a kind of a fixed formula, if 
you ll remember. 

Rowland: It was three additional state senators from Los Angeles and an 
extra one from San Diego -- 

Allen: And one from San Francisco. 

Rowland: And one from San Francisco, yes. The Wellman Commission came 

after that. What was the reaction to Pat Brown s all of a sudden 
involvement with legislative matters and senate affairs? Did the 
assemblymen like yourself welcome Pat Brown getting involved in ~ 

Allen: No, I ll tell you what it was. Pat Brown wouldn t go to the 

bathroom unless he called Earl Warren and got permission. And 
you might just as well know, right now, that Earl Warren, as a 
U.S. Supreme Court Justice, still fingered this state. Look, Pat 
Brown was to Earl Warren what Charley McCarthy was to Edgar Bergen, 

Rowland: Or what Artie Samish was to the -- 

Allen: Artie Samish was a fourteen karat faker. I read his book, and I 


can show you a hundred and seventy-one discrepancies. Gardner 

Johnson, who s a good historian and past president of the State 
Historical Society and a former member of the legislature and a 
tremendous lawyer, will point out to you better than two to three 
hundred instances where Artie Samish was a downright liar. He 
was the biggest fake I have ever seen in my life. The only 
difference between him and this guy Jim Jones is that he just 
didn t feed anybody strichnine and Kool-Aid. But Samish had some 
of these guys mesmerized around here that he was the power of 
California. M 

Rowland: But getting back to Earl Warren and Pat Brown -- 

Allen: And to get back to Artie Samish, Artie Samish was a faker in this 
respect I documented twenty eight measures that Art Samish was 
defeated on. One of them happened to be the one that Jeanette 
Daley pinned his ears back, and we skipped rope with it. It was 
the Yountville Veterans Home and the dam at Yountville. 
She laid it into him like Willie Mays would lay into a home run. 
And then Gardner Johnson there was many bills that Gardner 
Johnson beat him on. As egotistical as I know certain people are, 
they couldn t write that good themselves about Artie. That s what 
got him in trouble. 

When Artie began to lose that little redhead that he had around 
here, that little hatcheck chick that he picked up out at Santa 
Anita racetrack and would taunt and abuse before everybody that s 
when he started to show his muscle, this great guy, when he talked 
to Velie, and when he put that dummy on his lap: the dummy called 

"Mr. Legislator." 

Rowland: Getting back to Earl Warren and Pat Brown, then the suggestion 
for the Wellman Commission came from Earl Warren. 

Allen: Yes. 

Rowland: Was the action welcomed in the assembly? 

Allen: No. Well, we re talking about blue ribbons Gov. Brown asked 
me: will you accept membership on a blue ribbon committee? The 
only thing is that you go out and work your head off and you send 
in your recommendation, nobody pays a damn bit of attention to 
them and nothing is done it about, and that s why you get blue. 
And that s why they call it "blue ribbon." Because you re 
hunting for a ribbon to hang yourself with. I wouldn t serve on 
one of them any more to save your soul. Now 

Rowland: Now, what was the reaction in the assembly to that? Was it 

Allen: To what? 

Rowland: That the governor was stepping in creating this commission that 
might possibly work out some reapportionment. 

Allen: Look, this vacillating Pat Brown could double deal you over, just 
for the practice, like this kid of his. Those two guys should ve 
been used car salesmen. Really and truly. They could turn right 
around and sell you the state capitol as an apartment building. 

And nobody knew about the Wellman Committee, or a lot of it. I 
said to Pat Brown, "Look, how about calling Earl Warren on the 
phone, or when you re talking to him getting your instructions 
for tomorrow morning, tell him, Here s the idea for phasing this 
thing out. " And Pat, you know, he s a dudderhead anyhow, he said, 



And so he took those things and he went over to his office 

he came back and he said, "Well, Don, I got to thinking about 

that last night and I got to thinking about it this morning," 

and he said, "I don t think it s a good idea." He said, 

"We re under a court of law, and being a lawyer and you re 

not you don t dare approach the U.S. Supreme Court." 

And I said, "Well, sure you do, for instructions from to time. 

That s been the history of the Supreme Court." 

"Well, okay," he said, "But I don t think we ll get anywhere 

with it. I ll let you know in two or three days." So in two 

or three days, it was a no no. 

Anyhow, then Warren sent a guy out from Georgetown University, 

Washington D.C. , who was out here looking down everybody s throat. 

I found out about it. I got it in a peculiar way, about the 

stranger from abroad. That s why we held to the line to do 

everything to wash our own linen. 

Maneuvers Around Reapportionment 

I don t know whether you re acquainted with the fact that when we 
had bills by Senator Teale, we had bills by myself, and young 
Senator Tommy Rees took a hand in the thing, and he tried a bill, 
and he tried to come over to the assembly with one, but the only 
unfortunate thing about Tommy was that he thought his perfect bill 
was perfect. But he had only left out of his reapportionment map 
about 200,000 people sitting out around Bel If lower and down in that 
country. He didn t even have them in the books. So he said, "Oh." 
So he shut up on that, but he tried to tirade me, and I started 

calling him "Baby Snooks," and he didn t like that. 

Rowland: What was your reaction to the Warren Court decision in 64. Were 
you surprised, or were you 

Allen: No, no. I suspected all along that it would be coming, and that s 
the only time that Jess and I were ever close, was that we were 
matching information back and forth and watching Warren s attitudes 
and we were noting the action of his stooge*, "Edmund - call me Pat - 

Rowland: But Warren, as governor, was always against reapportionment. 

Allen: Oh, he was. So was Pat Brown. 

Rowland: As attorney general, you mean. 

Allen: Oh, yes. Oh, yes. Pat Brown was always against it. See, he 

wanted to get even with some of the boys up here like Hugh Burns 
and the rest of it. The funny part of it was -- 

Rowland: Why did he want to get even with Hugh Burns? 

Allen: Oh, I don t know. Just different things, a little bit which 
started with Brown s vacillating during the 1960 presidential 

convention. But he went down to Los Angeles, and instead of 

calling me, the author of the /bill, and saying this is a 

historic bill "How about coming in here and 
Rowland: "participating in the signing of the bill?" 
Allen: Participating in the signing of the bill has been customary. 

But he goes down, and he chooses Bonelli s office in southern 

California. Because more votes down there, I guess and to 

anger Hugh Burns. 
Rowland: So you weren t shocked at all when Earl Warren came through 

with the one man-one vote decision. 

Allen: Oh no, no, no. No, I wasn t at all because I knew that you 


know, I ve known this Earl Warren. I ve been out fishing with 
him. I ve been on the trail with him many times. And I know 
that Earl Warren himself had never participated in private 
business. The guy had always been on a public payroll. He had 
been a hatchet man for various things. 

By the way, later I wrote a letter I don t know whether I 
have it around here any more or whatever I did to President 
Lyndon Baines Johnson and told him that I anticipated that 
Earl Warren was going to be head of the committee investigating 
the Kennedy assassination, I told him that Earl Warren couldn t 
find a giraffe in a flock of sheep, and he d screw any kind of 
a report like that up so bad that it d be a controversy from now 

on out. But Johnson didn t pay any attention to it. 

[See following page] 
Rowland: One of your early suggestions / it looks like to preserve the 

makeup of the senate was to increase the senate to sixty members. 

Allen: That s right. So the state wouldn t lose some of that expertise 
over there. Look what you lost! Look what was wiped out! Wiped 
out five senators in one district! In other words, the district 
that Teale served used to have six members in it. 

Rowland: What was the reaction of senators to that suggestion? 

Allen: Well, at that time, they had a lawsuit going on. They had Herman 
Selvin, noted constitutional lawyer from Los Angeles in Sacramento 
handling the lawsuit for them, and they didn t want anything that 
would rock the boat. But you see, we had this equal division, 
"one man, one vote," years ago in this state. As a matter of 

Rowland: Before 1926 you had a "one man, one vote" proportioned senate? 

Allen: Yes, sure. We started out with it. We had thirty senators and 


Sacramento Bee 

February 24, 1965 

LA Assemblyman Allen Feels Way 
Out Is To Increase Senate To 60 

Assemblyman Don A. Allen, dervd the legislature to reap-jquired reapportionment in 
of Los Angeles Countv. chair-i portion the senate on the basis 1971." 

f .1 ~KI,, oi^,,nciof population rather than geo-l Allen stated if the plan were 

man of the assembly elections! |, y ag a[ present B adopted lt could be ratl(ied in 

and reapportionment commit- -while Northern California a statewide vote next Septem- 
tee. today said enlargement of stands to lose 15 senators to ber. 

the state-senate membership Southern California under, "If a clear majority of the 
from 40 to HO would be one court ordered reapportion- legislature approves of the 
way out of the dilemma fac- ment, one pten that has been plan," Allen said, "it can be 
ing, the legislature on reappor- suggested to expand the sen- passed early in the session and 
tionment. ate would give the south 15 the legislature- could then pro- 

Allen said he has deter-ior slightly in excess thereof , j ceed with reapportionment of 
mined many people are con- 1 the north losing only six or ; 60 senatorial districts pending 
cerned there will be "irrepar- seven to the populous coun-| approval of the people in Sep- 
able damage caused by the,, ties," Allen stated. tember." 

loss of experience and wisdom "By a proper phase out 

in the senate which we face, there would be no need to lose 
as a result "of the supreme! the valued services of any un- 
court s ruling". The court or- til after the constitutionally re- 

Allen said he has been ad- 
vised the federal court likely 
would approve such a proce- 


sixty assemblymen, and in the Mother Lode country, why there 
were assemblymen living within twelve or fourteen miles of 
one another. One district, once served by assemblyman Chappie, 
had sixty assembly members in it at one time, and thirty 
senators, also. Do you want this read into the record, or -- 

Rowland: We could put it in the appendix. 

Allen: Yes. Well, I didn t know whether you wanted it in the trans 
cript because I think you gain something out of reapportionment 
when I say these hearings are a vital issue, and I want to 
express the thoughts and so forth. 

But I said this; we had taken an oath of office. The U.S. 
Supreme Court had made this reapportionment decision. Now how 
are we going to get around it? So let s cut the argument and 
let s get down and go to work. (See page 485 of my Legislative 
Source Book. ) 

Rowland: Now, in the Legislative Source Book, you said that the senate third 

house representatives used their money to try to defeat the U.S. Supreme 
Court decision through federal constitutional amendment. 

Allen: That s right. 

Rowland: What third house -- 

Allen: Well, now wait a minute. What actually happened, U.S. Senator 

Everett Dirksen had a measure that once it was put on the ballot, 
it would become a constitutional amendment. 

Okay. Now, the senators and assemblymen from the rural areas were 
trying to gain support for it. Some of our crowd made the rounds 
through the East. 

Rowland: What do you mean by "our crowd?" 

Allen: Well, some of our members of the legislature -- northern, especially 


-- made the rounds through the East, and each one of them took 

various states of the union. 
Rowland: Do you recall what senators? 
Allen: Oh yes. There was George Miller, Jr., Hugh Donnelly, Steven Teale, Sts. 

Arnold, Luther Gibson and James Cobey. 
Rowland: Burns was a part of that, wasn t he? 

Allen: Well, Burns didn t get out in the area like they did. 
Rowland: Rattigan and Teale? 
Allen: Yes, Joseph Rattigan and Teale and Miller. I remember Jerry Waldie, wl 

was an assemblyman, and he was a floor leader, told me that he 

had gone to Massachusetts, that they (senators) had chosen him. 

And he got to talking about you know. 
Rowland: And he was part of the team to convince states to support the 

Dirksen amendment? 

Allen: Right. And they told him to get his ass out of their state. 
That s just exactly what he told me. He said, "That s just 
exactly and here it is in writing." And that s what it said: 
We ll run our own business. We don t need any help from you 

And he got the same thing in New Hampshire. 

And when these guys came back, they were defeated, because none 
of the Eastern people wanted any part to do with them. See what 

I mean? It broke them up. The California legislators touring 

other states/were turned down on the Dirksen amendments, decided 

it was time to get down to business and proceed to carry out the 
court s edict. 

Now, you take one of the states that has about two hundred seventy 
five members in the lower house. Practically every township had 


one. They had to cut way down to about 150 members. 

Rowland: Senator Teale recalled to me a ticklish situation in which the 
Southern states wanted to preserve their present apportionment 
that prohibited blacks from getting voting and representation 
in the state legislature. And there was a position where some 
liberals in the California Senate were speaking in behalf of 
the Dirksen amendment and had to compromise with the Southern 
states -- 

Allen: That is true. That did come up. A black civil rights leader 
brought that up. His name was James Meredith. 
Now, getting back to this other situation here, one of the 
amusing things I think you ll find in the book there, I had a 
kid by the name of Steve Smith, who was my consultant. And I 
had to knock Steve s ears down one way and up the next, but he 
was a worker. He had a personality that wasn t the greatest 
in the world but he sat down one afternoon, evidently not 
having too much to do at the moment I suppose, and he wrote to 
one of the federal judges. This is when the federal judges had 
reapportionment under their jurisdiction. And he said: Here s 
our problem. Our state constitution says that we can t break 
across county lines, break up counties, and so forth and so on. 
But, we re going to have to do it. 

So the minute I seen it, I flipped the letter to the legislative 
counsel, and the next thing everybody was in the room. And every 
body was waving hands, and I guess they thought we d go to jail 
for contempt. Because you don t do that in a lawsuit. You have 
to ask it in open court before your opponents. 
Three days later, one of the nicest letters from this appellate 


federal judge said: "If it (the state constitution) stands 
in your way, go ahead and ignore it - because if it stands in 
the way of carrying out the orders of the U.S. Supreme Court, 
do it! 

And that left Steve off the hook. But nevertheless, veteran 
lawyers say they ve seen it done before. 

Now, I, in addition, had published a couple of documents on our 
method of reapportioning that we could put in. My report (Legis 
lative Source Book); I put a price tag on it for three dollars 
seventy five cents, so everybody bought it up. All the time 
that this was going on, during the controversy, my feelings were 
well known: that I would have much rather enlarged the senate; 
or I would have much rather phased reapportionment in over a 
period of time; or I saw the inevitable handwriting on the wall, 
and I was laying back, making moves. 

Now, we spent some ninety thousand to get the job done; other 
years, it d been a million and half, three million, six million 
previous years and subsequent. Not now: I didn t spend much 

I got to thinking: let s try this! I went over and I talked to 
some friends of mine over at Aerojet. And at the time they were 
selling computer space. I was pretty much intrigued with it. 
So I got a hold of an operator that they recommended -- a big, tall, 
gangling kid by the name of Bill Below. And I went to Jess, said: 
I m going to hire him. Jess said: Look, I told you this was your 
job; I m not going to interfere. 

Okay, so I got Below in there. And we got him to come in, and I 
got a hold of Steve and we talked it over. So we went out and we 


had a trial run with a computer. We liked what we saw. We 
showed it to Jess, and we showed it to some of the others, and 
that became part of AB (assembly bill) number one, my bill. It 
became the first computerized reapportion in the nation. 

Rowland: But going back, though, there was the original Teale bill, SB 

(senate bill) 6, which never was passed and never met the federal 
court deadline of June 30th of 65. Why didn t that pass? 

Allen: Because of this lawsuit, and because of the Dirksen amendment. 

Rowland: The press said that there was bickering between the senate and 
the assembly over the at large election suggestion in the Teale 
bill, for Los Angeles county. 

Allen: There was ~ that and others. Of course, there were blocks 

being thrown in the way by the senate. They had to create some 
sort of diversion; you had to see it from a legislative viewpoint. 
And there was that at-large you go down into Los Angeles county, 
the one place 

Rowland: What would be the advantages and disadvantages of an at large 
election for Los Angeles? 

Allen: This was just a diversionary tactic. That s all I could ever make 
out of it. Then too, all of the senate membership could come from 
the same area. We had that experience when the City of Los Angeles 
had nine members - all at-large - seven of the councilmen lived in 
a three block radius. That s why the charter was revised into 
equal districts with defined boundaries. 

Rowland: Did Tom Rees have some influence there? Was he trying to preserve 
his seat by 

Allen: No, Tom Rees tried to preserve his seat by cutting down on the 
numbers. Of course, Tom was -- 


Rowland: Cutting down on the numbers, which -- ? 

Allen: Number of districts! In other words, instead of taking the full 
fourteen to sixteen districts Southern California was entitled to 
ia Los Angeles, Orange and San Diego counties - about 8 districts. 
What he did was to try and fashion -- he had also - knowing the 
history of the Los Mgeles experience being repugnent - picked 

up a portion of my attempt to phase-in reapportionnent. But he was in 
/senate, and he had to get along with those guys over there. 

But that Teale bill was diversionary. 

Rowland: This is SB 6 we re discussing. This is the first bill from 

the senate, which Senator Teale authored. The main stumbling 
block, according to the press, was that Los Angeles county, or 
any senatorial office elected would be elected at-large. 

Allen: Oh, yes. That s right. We did conduct a meeting. It did get 
over. And they threw that at-large bit in there. Knowing the 
history of Los Angeles - I still go back to my original premise. 

Rowland: A diversionary tactic? 

Allen: It was a diversionary tactic, because at that time they had first, 
the lawsuit, and they had Dirksen -- the Dirksen deal. 

Rowland: Now, when the state senate failed to reapportion itself by the 
deadline the federal court set, the State Supreme Court stepped 
in and ordered senate and assembly reapportionment. 

Allen: That s right. Now, let me tell you this: what we did we had 
taken in the assembly for so long the premiss that, by God, this 
is your house (the senate) and you guys move. You guys (senators) 
put it over with us, and if we can live with it and it s within 
that point that was set (at the time, I think it was fifteen per 
cent or something like that) -- 


Rowland: It was a ten percent or twelve percent margin. 

Allen: No, fifteen high, and five low. 

So anyhow, in getting back, we took that position, in all fair 
ness to the senate that was their job. "You guys do yours, 
give it to us. We ll put it with ours, and no more." 

Rowland: This was the "two-way street agreement" between the 

Allen: Well, years ago, yes, it started in the thirties. So anyhow, 
when Judge Fred Houser was chairman of the Reapportionment 
Committee in 1940 and 41, I was a member of the committee, and 
we had that way of doing those things, you see. 
Now, in getting back to this thing, there was so much diversion 
over in the senate at the time that it was darn shame that I 
didn t record a lot of it and put it down. Because there was 
no question about it. The senators doing everything in the 
world, and they were moving not to touch reapportionment at 
all. Hoping for the miracle of relief. See what I mean? 

Rowland: Yes. 

Allen: All right. Now, they (senators) exhausted every means, and when I 
finally told them: Look, I know. I hate this as much as you cats 

And they (senators) said: Well, by God, you re going to build 
yourself a good senate seat. 

I said: I will never, never run for the state senate in this state. 
I will quit before I have to. (Well, fortunately, the doctors came 
along and said I had to quit.) But anyhow, I said: I couldn t sit 
with comfort in the assembly chamber knowing that I was sitting in 
a seat of somebody that I had destroyed over here. And Senator 
Begovich, you know, I ll never forget him kind of an emotional 


guy he got up and he said: We ll always have to love you for 

being fair, Don. He put his arm around me and told members of 

the senate Don didn t want reapportionment , but he got it to us in 

an outstanding way. 

See, I had a little difficulty once in a while with Teale and 

his people, but 

Rowland: His staff people you mean? 

Allen: Yes. But his staff people were good, and they worked right on 
over there with us. But like I say, then-we went over to the 
senate, after we got this thing started, we got straightened 
out with this computerization, 

Rowland: The press was stating that the big battle between the senate and 
assembly was the battle between the senators and Assemblyman 
Unruh, claiming that Unruh wanted to get control of the senate by 
offering his lieutenants senate seats in 1966 and having them take 
over the senate and depose Hugh Burns from pro tern. 

Allen: Well, mister, I want to tell you a little story, that might have 

been in the wind. But like I say, it all goes back to diversionary 
tactics: anything that ll knock it down, anything that ll cause 
dissension or delay, let s use it let s try. And see if a 
miracle will happen. Then we can get the Dirksen amendment, or we 
can do thus, thus, and so. But that s the way that it worked out, 
you see; it was one of those things. Now, you had another one in 
here - how far along are we now? What do you want to hold me to? 

Rowland: Well, what I was going to ask you next is the question of why was 
the assembly, as well as the senate, ordered to reapportion itself 
in 1965, by the California Supreme Court? Was that just a technical 
problem with reapportioning? Some might speculate that it was the 


senators putting pressure on the court to force the assembly to 
reapportion, therefore breaking up the battle between 

Pensions and Reapportionment 

Allen: No. The first thing that I knew, I was called down by Pat Brown ~ 
the only honest thing he ever did in reapportionment question was 
to call me down in his office and tell me, or ask me one question 
and tell me one thing. He said: Tonight, Earl Warren is holding 
a telephone conference with the state Supreme Court to talk this 
thing over. He will have them take jurisdiction tomorrow morning. 
"Oh." I said, "How can you believe in that timetable?" 
He (Warren) says, "They will. It s been in the mill for several 
days." So he said, "Now, there s one thing I want to know from 
you. You know, Stanley Arnold s bill ~ Senator Arnold." (He 
was later appointed a Superior Court Judge. ) "Stanley Arnold wants 
to put in a bill to provide retirement benefits for guys who don t 
have too much time in the senate, if they served in city councils 
and in the " 

Rowland: I believe it just said "public office." 

Allen: Yes, public office. Well, he went on to elaborate. So I said: 
Well, I ll tell you. I won t introduce such a measure, but if 
there s some place along the line, or some of the other boys want 
to, I ll go for it. I ll promise you this: that I don t get any 
retirement at all from my ten years of city council in Los Angeles; 
I won t touch it." 

So he said, "Well, okay." But he said, "Do you think it d help out? 
I understand ~" 

Rowland: What was Brown s position on the Arnold bill? 


Allen: Oh, he was for it. 

Rowland: He was for the Arnold bill? 

Allen: Oh, hell yes. He issued a proclamation and issued a statement in 

its favor. It and other correspondence in this matter is included. 

Rowland: That bill was defeated, wasn t it? 

Allen: The Arnold bill never rocked out of the legislature. So the 

Arnold bill was dropped, with the understanding it would be in 
cluded as amendments in an appropriation bill, and then we had a 
cleanup bill 

Rowland: It was SB (senate bill) 13 introduced by Senator Teale. 

Allen: That s right, SB 13. But it eventually came over, and it was a 
cleanup bill. 

Rowland: It was a cleanup bill to the reapportionment legislation that 
Governor Brown signed? 

Allen: Yes. ## 

Some of the members said, "Well, now what are we going to do about 

this Arnold bill?" 

I said: Well, the governor indicated to me he was for it. And I 

said: I don t know. I don t think it s going to affect too many. 

Now, I happen to know two or three guys it would. I said: I will 

disqualify myself on it, with regards to the service military or 

city council of Los Angeles. 

But there re some guys with military service and others that have 

short term, like two years city council - one a Justice of the 

Peace for three years until the justice of the peace courts were 


Rowland: You were getting a military pension, weren t you? 

Allen: No. I want to lay that one to rest, too, right quick. I got 


injured down there in Nicaragua, and they were going to give me, 

after sixteen years, a retirement based on forty percent of pay 

at that time. If I accepted retirement I couldn t pass civil 

service disability with such a percentage, so I said: The hell 

with it; I won t take it. So I waived. Anyhow, the statute of 

limitations had run out on it now, so I can t get it. So I 

don t want it. At that time, it d have only been about fourteen, 

fifteen dollars a month. 

Finally, they said: Will you, as chairman of one of the committees, 

order a pension amendment instead of the Arnold bill? 

Teale said to me, "Oh, hey, go ahead, Don. I ve ordered a lot 

of amendments." And he said, "Get your amendment in here." So 

we promised Arnold and some of the boys that this would happen. 

I went down to the legislative council and received amendments to 

SB 13 exactly as the governor asked for in his special call and 

his press release on it. [See following page] 

And a funny part of it was, Arnold never held any other position 

that would give him anything out of it, except maybe three years 

of legislative service. 

So anyhow, we [assembly] get that one (SB 13) and we amend it. We 

put it out, we tell everybody about it. So I told the governor, and 

I said, "Now, look governor, we have taken care of your call 

request on the Arnold bill." 

Rowland: You told the governor yourself? 

Allen: Oh yes. 

Rowland: Did you see Frank Mesple", too? 





WHI.REAS, The Legislature of the State of O.lif- rrn.i rus U-i-n tailed in 
extraordinary traion and hai convened on |une 25, 1 965; and 

WHEREAS, On account of extraordinary occasions which have arisen and now 
exist, ir is deemed desirable and necessary to submit additional subjects to the 
Legislature for consideration; now, therefore, 

I. EDMUND G. BROWN, Governor of the State of California, by virtue of the 
power vested in me by law, hereby amend and supplement my Proclamation dated 
June 24, 1965, by adding the following additional purpose thereto, and thereby 
permitting the Legislature to legislate upon the following subject, in addition to 
the subjects specified in the original Proclamation, to wit: 

Item 6. To consider and act upon legislation relative to retirement benefits under 
the Legislators Retirement Law for legislators affected by court-ordered reappor- 

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the Great 
Seal of the State of California to be affixed this twenty-ninth day of June, 1965. 



IrrrrUry tf S/.lr 


Governor Edmund G. Brown 
June 29, 1965 


Governor Edmund G. Brown announced today 
that he has placed a sixth item on special call 
for consideration by the legislature. 

The new item is "to consider and act upon 
legislation relative to retirement benefits 
under the legislators retirement law for 
legislators affected by court-ordered reappor tionment 

A bill by Senator Stanley Arnold (D-Susanville) 
to provide certain retirement benefits for 
Senators died, awaiting concurrence, in the final 
hour* of the Legislature, although it had passed 
both houses of the legislature. 

* * * * 


Allen: Not until later. Frank stated! Don you have done a fine 

historic job on reapportionment. This Arnold thing could erase 
all the good work you have done on it. I agreed with Frank 
Mesple. I said, "Look, the governor asked me about this - he 
even put it on special call. You get the governor to tell this 
to me - personally tell me - Don drop the Arnold amendment and I 
will. If he says, no, don t include the Arnold amendment, then 
I ll cut it right out, boy." 

Rowland: But you did see the governor personally on this? 

Allen: Before I even went down and got the amendment. 

Rowland: What did he say? 

Allen: He said, "Well, you might just as well clean the whole thing up." 
But in the meantime, the air control people appointed by Governor 
Brown, had slipped one of the senators a measure on air pollution 
control that brought about an air pollution device deal that would 
give a contract to the firm a complete monopoly, estimated at 
about $400 million that the people who drive automobiles would ve 
had to pay. Some of the reporters found out that the attorney 

for this firm was the son-in-law of Edmund G. "Call me Pat" 

Brown. So /the need to find a new white hat and a villain to get 

the stink off that little gem, he found the white hat in the 
amendment to SB 13 and a villain named Don Allen. And when the 
newsboys got onto that, all hell broke loose. 

So to kill my pension amendment was another diversity: Pat seized 
upon this. Mesple has never told me to this day that that was the 
case, but I have many indications from it. 

Rowland: That this is why he vetoed the entire bill? 

Allen: That s right. But then he turned around and asked the California 


Supreme Court to allow it (retirement benefits) without that 
amendment in there. And I wrote a little classic over here 
that the press boys have applauded, that I bombed hell out 

of Brown with. fSee the Westgate Broadcast and letter to Governor Brown, 

Appendix A] 

It s one of those things Brown would tell you to your teeth. 

You have breakfast with him in the morning, and he d tell you 
to your teeth at dinner that he hadn t seen you in a week. I 
called him "the great vacillator." 

Rowland: "The tower of jello" I ve heard that, too. 

Allen: Sure and the "Tower of Jello." 

Rowland: There s one thing that s just been coming up in the press recently 

that I ve been asking everyone about, and you would probably be a good 
one to ask because you were chairman of the retirement committee. 
Max Rafferty and various other public officials are getting a 
huge retirement benefit due to an inflation factor that had been 
put in to legislative members and state employees retirement 
benefits in 1964 and had been approved by Pat Brown. Do you re 
call that? 

Allen: Yes, I do. That was Elliott s bill. Of course there is another 
reason. A law suit brought about for former State Treasurer, 
Bert Betts - [Tee Betts vs the Board of Administration. Aug. 19, 
1978, 21 Cal 3rd 859T) 

Rowland: Ed Elliott? 

Allen: Yes. Which raised three percent a year over the fifteen years. 

You see, our bill started out -- our original contract started 
out that we would get five percent of salary and limited to 15 
years of service. We paid in four percent and received a five 
percent of salary times years of service. This passed the State 


Supreme Court in mid 1948 - Knight and Collins vs Retirement 
Board. The judges were paying in two percent of their salary 
and we were paying in four. 

Also, there was a bill introduced by one of the San Francisco 
legislators to allow an aide of Governor Brown to join the 
State Retirement System and receive credits for service in the 
San Francisco District Attorney s office when Brown was District 
Attorney. It failed passage. However, at the next session, it 
was sneaked into another bill by amendment - it passed and the 
governor signed the bill - the aide got a bargain. 

Rowland: Legislative members, you mean? 

Allen: Yes. So it went along for a number of years. All of a sudden, 
some of the bright boys over there seized upon the idea to sell 
the press on a salary raise, which had been recommended some 
twenty six years previous. 

Rowland: The legislative members salary raise. 

Allen: Yes. It s in this little booklet. You ll find what the hell 

it was at the time. But anyhow, when I retired, I was supposed 
to draw five percent of the new salary per month, times the 
number of years served. Then after fifteen years of legis 
lative service I would get three percent per year additional 
thereto. That was the provisions of the Elliott bill. So as a 
consequence, when it came in, unbeknownst to most of us until 
after the bill had got on the ballot 

Rowland: Do you recall the bill number? 

Allen: Oh, it was constitutional amendment number 1-A, 1966 election. 
But I also noted afterward that it had 
been amended twelve times one day, with 


senate amendments. They loved it to death. 

And as a consequence, we guys who came up to the legislature 
for a hundred bucks a month and absolutely no per diems or 
anything of that kind, except when we was on investigations -- 
we were ripped off. We couldn t draw any of it unless we were 
twenty five miles from our homes. I had that experience. 
Here is an example. Elmer Lore, who was a member of the 
assembly from San Fernando Valley from 1933 - 1941, lived in 
San Fernando, he was a pressman for the Los Angeles Daily News. 
He and I, and several of the members on a committee that I was 
chairman of took off for northern California, and we boys all 
met down in Los Angeles at the Los Angeles train depot. Some 
got on the train over at Glendale. And Elmer got on at his 
home town on the Daylighter. We received $8.00 per diem on 
investigations, 4 dollars for hotel and 4 dollars for meals. 
The railroad first served breakfast in the dining car when we 
reached Simi Valley, and lo and behold, when I filed the 
committee s claims, I was notified by Claire Brown in the 
controller s office, that I had made an error on Mr. Lore s 
claim. They found out that the breakfast had been served at 
Simi, California, and that was eighteen miles from Mr. Lore s 
home. So therefore, they were deducting eight-five cents for 
that breakfast. Now that s how close the controller watched 
expense vouchers. We didn t get the per diems in those days 
like these cats over here now. Previous to 1948, the legis 
lators were allowed during the sessions only, one round trip 
between their district and Sacramento at the rate of 5 cents per 
mile. We were given one set of Deering codes, 1500 letterheads 


and envelopes and only twenty five dollars postage. In the assembly we had 
eight stenographers for the eighty members during the session. We were not 
allowed free long distance phone calls. If we needed more typing, we paid 
for it. We had no district offices and no use of state cars. And up to 
1940, the desk in the Assembly Chamber was it. 

When we came in here, we worked from eight o clock in the morning til 
three o clock in the morning, around the clock, to get the bills out, or 
to get the job done. We would drop all bills in in January and recess for 
thirty days, came back in March, and then all hell would break loose. 
Each house used a legislative ploy and many times they d stop the clock. 
We had fifty-four committees in the assembly so that the work could be 
divided up and our one hundred legislative day limitation could be met. 
For example, you ll find statements in the Assembly Journal that were highly 
critical of that. One of them was from the Honorable Gardiner Johnson 

which was published much to the chagrin of the governor because Johnson in- 

[see following page] 
eluded the envelope it came in showing the date on the cancellation mark./ 

That fixed them from stopping the clock and we had to adjourn because this 

was well into July. 

Now, have you got any further questions. 


June 13, 1930] 


)> violated, no . 


. ,,,,,,1,1,.,.., I 


reason for r 1 1 I i>i u Assembly 
Bill ;<2 : consideration un 

lawful, being within seven daya 

of final adjournment. Current date 

shown on attached postmark. 

Through the years I have consistently opimiod control of tin- oil imluslrv l>\ 
commissions eom|MMrd of th* industry itself. 

I am i-ntinc for this Atkinson bill because the industry will lie i-ontrolled hv the 


~ f ~ Having been called to answer a telephone cull from Santa Cruz at the time the 
final vote was being taken on Assembly Bill No. 1926, I was unable to cast my 
vote. Had I been present I would have voted agnin*t this bill. 


Our rote for the Atkinson oil control bill \v:is not cast on the bnsig of our own 
knowledge, and we regret the precipitate manner iu which, necessarily, the subject 
was considered on the last day for the disposal of Assembly bills. Wo voted our 
confidence in the judgment and wishes of the Governor. 


My vote "no" on Assembly Bill Xn. 11)20. due to hasty consideration on last dny 
for Assembly bills and its potentiality for dangers. I feel thiit iiuijor comiMinies 
supporting bill will create further monopoly by driving out independents. In my 
opinion, intense pressure from them stampeded several members to vote "aye." 


Assembly Bill No. 1020 substitutes a "Conservation Commission" comjiosed of 
representatives of the people for the "Oil Umpire" nuw chosen by the oil companies 
themselves. The bill has the support of our couserration-minded Xutional Adminis 
tration. In my opinion, the Government should regulate oil production to conserve 
this invaluable resource. 


House Resolution No. 193. 

By Mr. Watson : 

WHEREAS. The Fifty-third Session of the California legislature will rank us one 
of the seven wonders of the world due to ihe action of the ins and outs, tne out* 
and ins, the RejHihlicuns and i lie Democrats rnmhincd : :ind 

WHERXA8, California lotlny will be blessitl wilh another "wonder of the tiges" 
when the members of the Legislature :ind the |n>opl< ,,r < nlit nrni learn of the 
entrance into the National Democratic I arty of u member of (he family at our ,i 
California s outstanding Rfpulilicnus, Charles W. Lyon, Jr.; ami 

WUEBKAS. Politics always make utruiist: lied-fi-llows, it will be more tbun worth 
while the price of admission to * Asuemblynian Charles W. L.tou, staunch Itepnbli- 
can. and John J. Raskob, National Uemocmti.- Commitiecniiin, throngli the marriage 


Rowland: Was there any argument opposing the retirement increase, the 
Edward Elliott bill? 

Allen: No, it went through. 

Rowland: But you said the senate liked the bill, and they added amend 
ments to increase -- 

Allen: No, I m talking about the bill gypped us retiree s prior to 

Rowland: When did the contract begin? 

Allen: 1947. The whole provision was drafted, practically, by the 
California Supreme Court, unanimously. 

There was a later measure on the ballot that allowed these cats 
to raise their salaries, and they double-crossed everybody that 
was entitled to a retirement prior to 1967. 

Rowland: Oh, I know what you re talking about. You re talking about the 
constitutional revision that also included the 

Allen: That wasn t only a constitutional revision. It was also a bill 
that was put in by the Joint Rules Committee and Jess Unruh. 
It was done in such a fashion that many of us did not catch it 
until it was too late that these provisions that had been 
amended in, over in the senate, twelve times. Brother Jimmy Mills, 
Chairman of the Assembly Rules Committee, and a few on the Joint 
Rules Committee of the senate and assembly were the guys who were 
responsible for that. 

Rowland: Now this was the one that became the proposition in 1966 

Prop 1. 
Allen: Yes, to raise their salaries. It was Proposition 1-A. It should 


have been referred to my committee on retirement and then to 
the committee on constitutional amendments. 

Rowland: Wasn t that the constitutional revision? 

Allen: Well, now wait a minute. Proposition Number One was my bill 

that allowed us to invest our retirement funds in common stocks 
and also in FHA (Federal Housing Authority) guaranteed loans. 
The earnings jumped from two and a half percent to better than 
nine at the present time. That bill has made the State of 
California not only the PERS (Public Employees Retirement 
System), but it has made the various other, like the Los 
Angeles City retirement systems, the 1937 Act counties -- six 
and three quarters billion dollars since its adoption. 

Rowland: But you were behind the legislative salary increase. You 
campaigned for it, and ~ 

Allen: Well, hell yes, I was for it, but I didn t know what was in the 


constitutional [proposition 1A] amendment because my/ attention was 

directed towards reapportionament and retirement investment 
measure and above all to assist in anyway to offer inducement 
to cause longevity to bring about good legislative practices. 

Rowland: Was the pre-reapportioned senate opposed to salary increases? 
That was the feeling I got in talking to senators: they felt 
that ever since salaries were increased, you got a different 
type of legislator in the 

Allen: There is some growing apprehension to the present system - as 
to the success or failure of the principal motive to recover 
the true legislative system which we all labored and sacrificed 
to bring about. We still believe in adequate salaries and some 
reasonable tools to perform good services with. 


We have noted many abuses and indulgences of recent date - such 
as one member living in Inglewood - flying down to his home and 
returning each day when the assembly was supposed to be in 
session. The first steps toward legislative betterment is noted 
in the paper I prepared called Historical Benchmarks of 
Legislative Compensation. It does, however, need updating on 
the last two salary raises. 

Many of us do not quarrel - we do believe more moderation 
should be practiced in the fringe benefits. There is no question 
the past few years has created a different type of legislator. 
It is a far call from the dedicated citizen legislator of a 
brief few years ago. 

Senator Ralph Dills was trained in the concept of the dedicated 
citizen legislator. Two others 
/Senator Rodda and Assemblyman Knox arrived just as the curtain was 

going down on the citizen legislator. Incidently - with the 
retirement of Knox, there will be only 19 members of the assembly 
out of 80 with more than 6 years service. 

The new members, despite calling themselves "Professional Law 
Makers" with all the help, salaries and other fringe benefits, 
are constantly seeking greener pastures. They have a greater 
turnover. They need to get the ideas out of their heads that 
this 20 billion yearly corporation is bush league. 
Another cause of concern is the lack of personal attention and 
investigation by the elected member. The delegating of those 
duties to staff members makes one think they just don t give a 
damn. They either don t know or care of the first rule of 
self government. A public servant is one who serves the people 
and not rule them. 


Another cause for concern is the beginning erosion of direct district 
representation. This is accomplished by some aides who find out an 
incumbent is quitting the aide sets up a suitcase residence and 
runs for election. Sometimes without knowing the main street of 
the principal cities within the district. 

Many long time observers of the Sacramento scene believe the vanity 
of Earl Warren not wanting to face a billion dollar biennial budget 
before his term ended and creating the annual session, planted the 
seed of a legislature of professional office holders has caused 
great mischief for California. 

Rowland: There must be a relationship, then, between salary increases and 
retirement benefits. 

Allen: Sure there is, a natural relationship. Because you must remember 
salaries jumped from six thousand a year to sixteen thousand on 
their- first jump. This was recommended by the T. Fenton Knight 
Task Force/1941 {see Kilpatrick letter, Appendix III], and they re 
entitled to five percent each year therafter. 

Rowland: When the proposition was passed in 1966, salaries rose to sixteen 

Allen: Yes, sure. And then they re entitled to five percent of the current 
salary up to 15 service years, and then a percentage based on the 
cost of living. The injustice occurred to those of us who were 
retired with service ending in 1966. We were frozen at the salary 
of that date. And I had twenty-two years in the legislature. 
Now, there have been sixty-four cases by public employees for 
current salaries and every one has been granted 
in favor of the plaintiffs. Those of us who were retired 


in 1966, many caused by reapportionment, are bringing suit on 
the same basis as Betts. I m joining this lawsuit. I think it s 
the only honorable thing to do. I think we were double-crossed, 

so here we go. These legislators are getting forty-five dollars 
a day per diems. Tax free. We re going to pay taxes on our 
pension, whatever we get. 

See, Betts vs Retirement Board went through the California 
Supreme Court, and it s the same thing. Betts has it. He s 
got his situation there. Betts 1 wife von it. She s an attorney. 
The Supreme Court recognized the contractual basis that Betts 

And I ve always recognized that. And for a number of years, the 
legislative counsel - Ralph Kleps - always said, "There is no way 
to breech or down grade a retirement contract. If you try to, 
you are- in a law suit," in his opinion to Hon. Allen Miller, when 
Miller was chairman of the Assembly Rules Committee. Miller is 
now a Supreme Court Judge retired. So it s only fair. The hell 
of it is is that the Betts favorable decision limits it to about 
thirty-five or thirty-six of us while there are other retired 
legislators just as deserving. 

Rowland: Now, I m not quite sure what you re talking about here, but let 

Allen: I mean legislators retirement. 

Rowland: You re talking about a suit. You re involved in a legal suit to 
get retirement benefits that you feel are 

Allen: Similar to Betts, Cranston, Rafferty and Pat Brown. 

Rowland: To get back ? 

Allen: Sure, like the Betts. It s filed on the same basis of Betts. 


Now, the Supreme Court has said that in the Betts case that 
there was a breach of contract. So if Betts is entitled to 
it, am I not? Or anyone else covered under .the same contract? 

Rowland: Were not talking about the same thing. We re not talking about 
the Edward Elliott bill, are we? 

Allen: Well, Assemblyman Edward Elliott s bill was a measure that 
provided three percent additional. 

Rowland: When was that? Do you recall? 

Allen: That was 1963. 


Rowland: Okay. So that s the one I m 

Allen: And it came under special session of 64. 

Rowland: That is the one that is now getting press coverage about the 
tremendous retirement benefits. 

Allen: I would suggest the Betts case, and by the way, the press re 
leases are quite exaggerated. 

Well, some of --. These people, like Marty Salditch in Sacra 
mento, a nice guy - he was always objective as hell, but I 
think he got on the wrong place. 

Rowland: He s with the Riverside Press Enterprise? 

Allen: Yes. But he got sucked in on that and got into a battle with me 
that neither one of us had a right being in, because he s always 
been an objective little guy, I always thought. He got sucked into 
the controversy about me putting the amendments in, because I came 
right out and said, "Yes, there was some other motive." 

Rowland: The amendments into the Elliot bill? 

Allen: No, the Teale bill. 

Just a second. I know I m getting awful around the bush here. 
I m sounding like Pat Brown and Jerry now. But getting back to 


the Teale bill, where I didn t complete one of the things about 
this bill that I should have. Mesple came over to me, and he 
said, "If you were asked, would you drop the pension amendment?" 
I said, "Sure. That don t make any difference to me. If the 
governor tells me to drop it, it ll be dropped. I ll get it 

amended out." 

Rowland: You re going back to SB 13, the technical correction/ your rider? 

Allen: Yes. Later Frank Mesple came over, and he said, "When you come 
down to the governor s office at the signing of the bill AB 1, 
the governor will sign it in a couple days why don t you and 
the governor go over the amendment at that time?" Mesple said 
to me, "You know I don t think that either of you wants that 
measure. You ve done a marvelous job up to now, so why louse 
it up with controversial language?" 

And I said, "Yes, I agree with that. To drop the amendment If 
the governor tells me to in writing - I ll drink to that." So 
that was the story. Getting back to reapportionment , I 
waited for the governor to call roe. I was called 
about eight o clock, at home, and they told me that the governor s 
plane had already gone south, and I said, "That s nice. I hope 
him a great trip." 

And not thinking of anything else, the palace guard in there said, 
"Well, you know he is going down to sign the bill in the Los 
Angeles supervisors chambers with Mr. Bonelli." 
"Oh?" I said. "Well, fine, but I can t get away this morning." 
And they had talked to Hugh Burns about the governor s trip pre 
viously, and I didn t know about it. That s when Hugh Burns told 
the press, "I don t give a damn if he signs that bill in the men s 


room." He said, "I m just damn glad it s out of our way." So he 
was really put out about that bill. He came to me and he told me, 
he said, "Did you know that the "Tower of Jello" has moved down 
to Los Angeles to sign your bill, with your fomer seat-mate on 
the Los Angeles Board of Supervisors, Frank Bonelli, who had 
not a damn thing to do except cause the rest of us grief around 

Backing Ronald Reagan 

Allen: And I said, "Well, you know that s our Pat. 

Brown has got a guy coming up here to Sacramento and wants me 

to endorse him this afternoon, and I m going to tell him just 

like a couple of the other boys did: that he can go whistle 

Dixie through a broken comb, for my endorsement." 

And the funny part of it was that Brown double-crossed my friend 

and campaign chairman over the years (we had first worked together 

in the Al Smith bid for president in 1928) : Robert "Bob" 

Bushnell. My friend (Bob) went home and died of a heart attack, 

and his wife died later. I was in the St. Vincents Hospital 

recovering from major surgery which forced me into retirement. 

So when Bob s daughter Liz came into see me and told me her 

dad was dead and her mother, Helen, was in intensive care with 

a massive coronary and in the same hospital with me, I called 

the Republican Committee, and I said, "You birds got anybody down 

there that can read or write or type letter? I got some stationary 


up here." I told them who I was. And I said, "I might just 
endorse Reagan, despite the fact that the So-and-So once caused 
picketing in front of my house, when he was an ultra-liberal 
Democrat." So I said, "But trot the stenographer over here, and 
let s go over a letter." 

Gee, whiz, members of his staff were down there in record time. 
They were there, at the hospital, followed by Reagan, who came 
running in and said, "Can we go on the air?" I said, "Sure we can 
go on the air." And he asked, "Right now?" I said, "No, no. I 
will have to get my doctors permission." (Which the doctor gave and 
stood by me during the broadcast.) 
Then he said, "Well, we ll be down tomorrow morning." 

Rowland: You re talking about the Republicans that were 

Allen: Yes. Oh hell, they were down at St. Vincent s Hospital real early 
Reagan must have camped there. See, I had a big hernia operation. 
And they were down there full blast. So that too.k care of that. And 
that was the way the tune went. And I endorsed Reagan the only 
Democratic officeholder that did. Not because of the vetoed 
legislation, but the double-cross of my friend, Bob Bushnell. 
Conflicts with the Republican Assembly 

Rowland: Now, what was your response to charges of the California Republican 
Assembly President Stevenson that you had been a lobbyist for Harmes 
Votetronics, a manufacturer of vote tabulating equipment. He said 
you were in conflict-of-interest by holding hearings on a bill which 
would prohibit centralized vote tabulation. You were chairman at that 
time of the Assembly Elections and Reapportionment Committee. These 
charges originally appeared in the Sacramento Bee on June 10, 1965. 


C^eck On Allen 

President Cyril Stevenson, Jr., 
of the California Republican As 
sembly said today he plans to 
ask for an investigation of a 
possible conflict of interest on 
the part of Democratic Assem- 
lyman Don A. Allen, of Los. 
Angeles County, whose elections 
committee has scheduled hear- 1 
ings on a bill which would pro 
hibit centralized vote tabulation.! 

believe Allen could give the bill) 
a fair hearing because Allen last 
fall acted as a lobbyist for Har-| 
ris Votetronics, a manufacturer 
of vote tabulating equipment. 

Stevenson said he would ask 
the CRA board to authorize a 
letter to Attorney General 
Thomas Lynch asking him to 
"explore the possibilities of a 
conflict of interest." 

June 10, 1965 
Page D2, column 5 

The billl, which would pro-; 
hibit centralized vote tabula 
tion, was sponsored by Demo-j 
cratic Senator George Miller ofi 
Contra Costa County. Stevenson 
said the CRA "strongly sup 
ports" the measure. 

"The bill would insure that 
ballots would be counted at the 
polling place, which I think is 
inherent in our form of govern 
ment," Stevenson said. 

He said with centralized 
tabulation "we would be trust 
ing just one man and a ma 
chine which is supposed to be 

Stevenson said Allen repre 
sented the Harris firm before! 
Los Angeles County s board of 
supervisors last August as a 
lobbyist, offering the firm s! 
services free on a trial basis. 

"I don t know how he could 
give this bill a fair hearing,, 
since he worked as a lobbyist 
for Harris last fall," Stevenson 

Allen: Yes, he had. been up to see me, this fellow Cyril Stevenson, Jr. 

He was president of the California Republican Assembly, and he 
came up to see me and he asked me about this Harmes Votetronics 
manufacturing firm, and I said I never heard of it (there never 
was such a firm). So then he said, "Now look, we have asked 
you to set aside a Republican district in San Francisco in the 
assembly, and if you don t, we re going to -pin this conflict 
of interest charge on you?" 

"Well," I said, "Right about now, I m going to pin a black eye 
right on you, kid, and maybe a broken jaw while I m at it." 
Now, the only time that I ever horsed around was with a voting 
machine brought to my attention. It was Joel Harris, who was 
with the University of California, School of Political Science, 
and Dr. Rubenol, who was in the School of Mechanical Engineering, 
told me that they had a voting machine. I said, "Fine. I ll 
go down to the basement and look at it." 

He said, "No, you don t have to do that. Here." I was imagining 
one of these big, hulking machines that would never work. 
He said, "No, we ve got it right here in the briefcase." 
And all of a sudden I looked at these guys. I knew Dr. Harris 
very well, and I just wondered when his mind got twisted and he d 
done a reverse turn. And they pulled this thing out of the 
briefcase. I played around with it for fully three hours, and 
couldn 1 t beat it. 

So I said, "Sure, I ll put a bill through for you." And I did. 
I thought it was the thing to do. It is a terrific fool proof 
device. They re using it now. I think Dr. Harris got gypped 
on it. I think he and Rubenol, both, got horsed out of it by 

Secretary of State Frank Jordan examines the votomatic voting 
device in 1965, developed by Professor Joel Harris, Department 
of Political Science, University of California, Berkeley. 
Left to right: Assemblyman Don Allen, Secretary of State 
Frank Jordan, Professor Joel Harris. 

Assemblyman Don A. Allen, Senior, Mrs. Margaret 
Allen, and Don Allen, Junior, now retired master 
technical sergeant, United States Marine Corps. 


So as far as that was concerned, that conflict of interest charge 
was made by a mad individual, and it was a piece of attempted 

blackmail, and I called the San Francisco district attorney 

[see following page] 
about bringing a criminal law suit./ The district attorney called 

me back and said, "You re damn right you can bring criminal libel." 
He said, "This guy has admitted it." He said, "I m telling him 
that he better get with you and better go right down to the press 
and square himself with them and right now. I ve got to give him 
an opportunity, Mr. Allen, to repudiate." And the guy, Stevenson, 
did. He said he was intemperate and lost his temper and so forth 
and so on. 

And one of the newsmen asked me, and I said, "Yes, he damn near 
lost his head, too." Because I was ready to serve it to him on 
a platter. 

Rowland: What was the blackmail again? I missed that. 

Allen: Stevenson told me that if I didn t set a Republican district in 
San Francisco, where a Republican could be elected, he would 
throw the so-called conflict of interest matter at me. 

Rowland: Did he refer to a particular Republican in a San Francisco 
assembly district? 

Allen: No, he didn t put it by name. No, he just wanted an assembly 

district created out there. And I told him at that time, I said, 
"Man, you can put every republican in one area and you would be short 
two thirds of a numerical needs of a district. 

Rowland: An assembly district to be apportioned, you mean. 

Allen: I said, "If you tried, you haven t got enough down there that 

meets the criteria." When we were talking and I showed him what 
the Supreme Court had held, I said, "Here s what your registrar 


July 2, 1965 
page A4, column 3 

May Sue CR A 
Chief For Libel 

Assemblyman Don Allen (U) 
of Los Angeles County reported 
to the assembly he has asked 
District Attorney John Ferdor. 
of San Francisco County to de 
termine whether there is a ba 
sis for filing charge of criminal 
libel against Cyril Stevenson. 
Jr.. president of the California 
Republican Assembly. 

Allen late yesterday got per 
mission to have printed in the 
assembly journal a letter in 
which he denied a statement by 
Stevenson accusing the assem 
blyman of a conflict of interest 
by acting as a lobbyist for the 
Harris Voteromcs Manufactur 

ing firm. 

No Hesitancy 

"I declare no hesitancy ;n 
stating that I have never been 
employed or received any com 
pensation, nor do I own any 
stock in any voting machine, de 
vice, tabulating equipment, nor 
does any member of my fam 
ily." Allen s letter to District 
Attorney Ferdon reads. 

Allen said Stevenson s accusa 
tion was made in a UP1 story 
filed by the United Press Inter 
national out of San Francisco. 

Allen reported to the assem- 
b I y he appreciated the con 
fidence shown in him by mem 
bers - of the assembly since 
Stevenson made his conflict of 
i interest charge. 

Seeks Opinion 

"My purpose in writing this 
letter is to ascertain your opin 
ion on the desirability and feasi 
bility for filing charges for 
criminal libel against this per 
son who has no basis or founda 
tion of fact whatsoever. Al 
len s letter to the district attor 
ney reads. "I Jo not intend to 
file a civil libel action." 

Allen s letter noted United 
States Senator Thomas H. Ku- 
chel of California set a pattern 
when he "with great courage, 
filed a suit against individuals 
who attempted to assassinate 
his character. 

Allen, chairman of the assem 
bly committee on elections and 
reapportionment. wrote "I do 
not intend to stand idly by and 
be the melancholy victim of any 
one who seeks to use my good 
character for his perscuul .ag- 


of voters tells me is the number of Republicans you got.V And 
I said, "You wouldn t have half enough to elect a Republican." 
Stevenson then got to mouthing off. He was going to throw his 
weight around. (Mimicking) He was the State President of the 
Republican assembly. 

And you know, three of the guys that founded the Republican 
assembly went after him right away. They said, "You don t do 
that to Don Allen. We put you (Stevenson) in office. We can 
take you out, if Allen don t send you to the slammer." 

Rowland: That was the only conflict with the Republican party you had, 

Allen: Hell, they wrote me in over their own man one time during 1940. 
Yes! ff 

Endorsing Max Rafferty 

Allen: I endorsed Rafferty. 

Rowland: Against Tom Kuchel? 

Allen: No. 

Rowland: Was that the Kuchel campaign? 

Allen: Oh, no, no, no. I would never go against Tom Kuchel. 

Rowland: But you did endorse him for re-election as superintendent of 


Allen: Yes. Well, when he ran against Tom Kuchel, I toldMax, I said, 

"You re crazy. You re going to ruin everything here." 

in 1970 
Later/ he came to me for my endorsement, and I said, "All right, 

I ll endorse you because I don t like this cat Riles." He was 
in my district. That campaign for superintendent of public in 
struction followed the campaign for senator two years later. 


Rowland: Wilson Riles? 

Allen: Wilson Riles. He was in my district at one time. He (Riles) 
was trying to find himself around in the political scene. And 
the thing, too, that appealed to me was that when Riles was 
hunting for a job, Max Rafferty came to his aid. I thought 
he was an ingrate to run against Max, to be honest with you. 
Still do. 

So I tried to contact March Fong this last election* Riles 

with her 
got into this argument /you know, about him not signing and not 

filing properly for reelection. Kiddingly I told her to go 
ahead and use the prerogative of her office on him. There was 
precedent when a former secretary of state got into a wangle 
with a news publisher and they went out here near Elvis and 
the secretary of state, John Denver, shot the guy very dead 
in a duel. That s the guy that Denver is named after: John 
Denver. And he was a state senator here and also a secretary 
of state and then a congressman from here for a while. But he 
was also a governor of all of the territories west of the 
Mississippi at one time. Quite a man. 

And I was going to tell her, "Make him (Riles) come out singing 
Lay that pistol down, babe. " But I couldn t get a hold of 
her. I was going to kid her about it. 

The Inheritance Tax Appraisal Episode 

Rowland: One last question, and that s I d like you to comment on your in 
vestigation of Alan Cranston s U.S. Senate bid in 1964. You were 
investigating an inheritance tax appraiser problem there with 

Alan Cranston when he was -- [See following page] 

Allen: That thing was handed to me. 

Rowland: Handed to you by whom? 

Allen: Well, I got it through the clerk of the assembly. It had to 
have been authorized under the law by the rules committee and 
the assembly and assigned to me by Speaker Unruh. 

Rowland: Why was Unruh ~ 7 

Allen: I don t know why. It seems that there was a guy by the name of 
Assemblyman Bagley ~ Bill Bagley, who wanted a job done on 
Cranston, I guess, and he demanded an investigation. So I 
went into the investigation, and hell, I went into the history 
and oh, did they drop it in a hurry. The Republicans especially. 

Rowland: Bill Bagley was a Republican? 

Allen: Yes. They hushed that in a hurry. Because from 1906 with the 
appointment of A. B. Nye, each succeeding controller was first 
appointed by the governor, so, Cranston was the first controller 
to be elected in contest with an incumbent in 52 years. It was 
my findings that Alan Cranston had cleaned up a real mess and he 
put the appraisers on an equal basis and secured the assistance 
of the Superior Court Judges to assist him. 

Rowland: He must have taken over from 

Allen: Oh, I ll tell you in a minute Kirkwood. He defeated former 
Assemblyman Robert Kirkwood. Kirkwood was from Saratoga. He 
served as an assemblyman. Anyhow, he was a nice enough office 
holder, but Cranston ran and won it. The first time in 52 years 
an incumbent controller had been defeated at the polls. 
You see, what had happened would be that a controller would get 

Sacramento Bee 
May 24, 1964 
page A3, column 1 


Cranston Calls For 
Appraiser Case Probe 

MOUNTAIN VI! \V S.i:ua her when Cranston us -run- 
Clara Co. AP Stale CKII- nill K f( " election as controller, 
irollei Alan Cranston said Cranston said that the 

charge w*s "ridiculous. that 
jeslerday he would welcome, he d * d no[ ujk to appraisers 

a fair and impartial mvestiga- a bout money, and that he 
lion by any responsi ble n re( j Soehnel last January, 
source of charges that inheri- The controller said further 
tance tax appraisers appoint- Soehnel was ousted after an 
ed by him have been forced} investigation disclosed him to 
to contribute to his campaign. 1 be an officer in a corporation 
Cranston is running for the which acquired property from 
Democratic nomination for an estate in which he had 
United States senator acted as appraiser. 

He said in an interne 1 * he 
questions whether he could 
get such a ht-ownn from as 
semblyman Don A Allen (D 
of Los Angeles. 

Allen on Friday told I M in 
heritance tax appraisers to 
prepare to disclose their fi 
nancial records. 

Unruh Link 

Cranston said Allen was 
one of Assembly Speaker 
Jesse Unruh s closest political 
associates and an announced 
supporter of former White! 
House Press Secretary Pierre: 
Salinger, his rival for the sen-j 
ate nomination. 

The controller said he pre 
dicted several days ago 
"there would be a smear a 
day now that Unruh is play 
ing a key part in the Salinger 

Cranston claimed this has 
been occurring "with clock- 
like regularity." 

Asked if he thinks the ap 
praiser appointment system; 
should be revised, Cranstoni 
said responsible legislative! 
committees, as well as the! 
state bar, have praised the 
present system. 

No Retreat 

He said he was the first 
controller 10 establish a code 
of ethics tor appraisers and 
he refuses to "retreat from 
something that is being done 

In Los Angeles Friday. Sal 
inger supporters sponsored a 
news conference for Edward 
J. Soehnel. a San Francisco 
real estate man. who said he 
got a job as an appraiser in 
1959 by contributing to Cran 
ston s campaign a year ear- 


another office, or by death, vacate the office and the governor 
would make an appointment. In many instances, the governor and 
controller had a few little things going for them such as 
appointing inheritance tax appraisers. The inheritance appraisers 
would be charitable and grateful appointees and could be a nice 
source of campaign help. 

The federal government allows self-appraisals, by the attorney and 
trustee of an estate, and then they investigate later. They ll 
send you to jail right quick if you don t do the right job. 
All right. And I thought it would be a damn good thing to abolish 
state appraisers sometime along the line and adopt the federal 

Some stories have long been told that the contributions of ap 
praisers would go into a general pot for campaign purposes and 
the governor would get fifty percent for his fee or not fee. 
No fee Let s not talk about fee. But, some governor s, but 
not all, would get a contribution, and whatever appraisers 
contributions would come in, the governor would split it four 
ways. This occurrs in the governor s office without the governor 
being aware of it. The governor would get half of it, the con 
troller would get twenty-five percent, and then they would split 
between the secretary of state and the treasurer the other 
twenty- five percent twelve and a half percent each. And that 
kept on for years and years. There was no governor that ever escaped 

I have never found the slightest bit of evidence to substantiate 
those rumors or allegations. If it ever did happen, it could 
never happen again due to the Cranston action. 


Rowland: But why did you launch this investigation right after Cranston 

announced his bid for the U.S. Senate in 64, instead of support 
ing Cranston as a Democrat? Is it just coincidence, or was 
Jess Unruh 

Allen: No! No, I don t know why the timing. I believe I answered this 
previously. Jess acted in full accordance with the rules. 

Rowland: There was talk in the press about Jess Unruh supporting Salinger 
for the U.S. Senate. 

Allen: Yes, Salinger. I didn t have anything to do with any of the 

Senatorial races at the time. They gave me a job to do, and I 
went ahead and did it. And then all hands ditched it. Right 
now. And I showed where these guys, see, that 

Rowland: Unruh gave you the assignment? 

Allen: Well sure, the rules committee. I was chairman of the elections 
committee, and they asked me to go in. Cranston liked it, though. 
He didn t talk to me until later on, many years later he talked 
to me about it and said, "You were really fair about it and 
decent." Well anyhow, I found out there that Cranston had been 
and I published it that he was the only guy that had ever been 
elected, straight out, and that is what he did was to divide these 
appraisals up. He went to the various courts and had a rotating 
assignment set up. 

Rowland: We can always seal it if it s too sensitive. 

Allen: Well, it might be. Let s say that one individual had control of 
one county, and that a huge landowner or person of great wealth 
in that county died: the appraisal of a multi-million dollar 
deal was in the neighborhood of a half a million dollars. 
Yes. Well, Cranston went in on that Democrat landslide with the 


rest of them and Betts. And so Cranston divided the in 
heritance tax revenue up. In other words, he rotated the 
appraisers, and everything was completely watched. He had a 
regular report from each appraiser and he had it down to one 
of the fairest situations I ve ever seen in that office. 
The record will show Cranston conducted a large scale house 
cleaning and set the pattern. I think the last two con 
trollers have been as fair since, including a very high-class 
persons like Hugh Flournoy and Cory. But it was there at one 
time -- it was payoffs. 

I know another fellow that once served in the legislature and 
quit to be an appraiser. He told me that he d make a hundred 
thousand dollars a year out of it - when Ray Riley was con 
troller. And all he had was a gal in his office doing the 
work. He would go out and bring in the data, make the in 
spection and bring it in, she d type it up and mail in a re 
port. The tax appraisers fees are set under the government 
code now - cut to one tenth of one percent. Recently con 
troller Cory fixed the maximum of $50,000 any one appraiser 
could handle. 

Now another little thing in the late 20 s and early 30 s, when 
we had the old Matoon in the controller s office, a serious 
situation regarding the tax deeded property resulting from that 
act, in the controller s office - under the matoon act the 
controller became the custodian of all tax deeded properties. 

Rowland: The old what was that? 

Allen: The Matoon Act. It was an assessment act. Any public agency 
that wanted to build a road or a highway or a storm drain or 


anything of the kind, the governing body, either city or state 
or county, would just Jjui Id Cl and then they would go back 
and assess the people for the full cost of it. There was an 
awful lot of people that lost their homes that way. All of a 
sudden you have a home that you built that you probably spent 
about eight thousand or more for, and you come up with a six 
percent interest-bearing assessment against your property, or 
lien against your property. In many instances, it was down 
right confiscation. 

So under one controller there was a gentleman down in Los 
Angeles that made himself several million dollars and bought 
three or four ranches off of tax deeded property manipulations. 
He would go out, especially over in the Negro district on 
Central Avenue, and down through there, and he d find , I 
personally believe he was tipped off by the controller - he 
would find this tax deeded property, and would be zoned as 
one family residential, R-l, and he d let these buildings out 
to people to three and four families in one property. And he 
would get the check direct from the SRA, the State Relief 
Administration. They paid him from thirty five to fifty 
dollars a month - each family - and yet he had only given the 
state something like seven or eight dollars a year in taxes for the 
property. He also made great profits by buying and selling tax 
deeded properties. This guy was drawing as much as a hundred 
eighty dollars per month in some instances per property out of 
the relief rolls for rental on these properties, you see what I 
mean? He made a fortune at it. Well, I broke that thing up in 
1941, with a simple little bill. And the guy never knew he was 


bit until he went back for more properties. 
Controller, Ray Riley, was a character. He was a member of 
forty seven committees, and he was the chairman of about 
thirty five, thirty six of those committees. He would call 
meetings throughout the state. Calling three or four of them 
at a time, and draw his per diems on each one. This is the same 
guy that knocked Elmer Lore out of eighty five cents for break 

Riley would go down to Los Angeles when Notre Dame was playing 
USC, and he would leave Sacramento and go down on four or five 
of these committees. He d call them all simultaneously. Of 
course, he always was well taken care of on football tickets 
for the folks. 

So anyway, Riley had devised this little program of tax deeded 
property and later brag about it. Some suspected that he was 
actually getting a little money in on this deal. 
So anyhow, Governor Frank Merriam caught up with him. The 
governor said, "How about going on the railroad commission for a 
short time and behaving yourself. I don t want to have to get out 

and knock hell out of you at the next election." And of course, 
Ray Riley served for a number of years on the railroad commission 
now Public Utilities Committee. 

Rowland: One last thing here, since I ve got you down sitting in front of 
me, and we would like to have more information about the assembly 
and how Speaker Unruh ran the assembly in those years, was there 
any change in assembly committees, as far as status was concerned? 

Allen: Well, when Jess took over, he took over the same committees 
that he had inherited from Ralph Brown - about 24 standing 


committees. When I came to the assembly in 1939, we had 54 
standing committees. And there s a little let s say a 
little bit of apocryphal stories going around about Jess. I 
kidded one time on the floor and called him "Big Daddy Warbucks," 
because here he was the chairman of the ways and means com 
mittee, with all this money, and Jess had been raised very 
frugally as a kid. 

So I kidded him about it, and at first he liked it, see. Be 
cause a lot of the newspapermen thought it was tied to the 
"Cat on a Hot Tin Roof," the Tennessee Williams play. But 
then pretty soon it became a drag on him. 

The Assembly Lockup 

Now, there was a big article about how he whipped the Republi 
cans into line by holding these Republicans overnight, under a 
call of the house. 

Rowland: Were there any Republicans that Jess worked with well? 

Allen: He worked with them all, or tried to. But anyway, you must 

remember that call of the house is called by the members, not 
the speaker. There has to be a bona fide motion made and a vote 
taken on it. And if you ll go over the records, you ll find that 
a motion was made by William Bagley, Assemblyman Bagley, and 
seconded by John Veneman both Republicans that we got to a 
call for the house. This was on the closing night. So Jess 
wanted to get on with the business of the day. 

Rowland: This is the assembly lockup you re describing? 

Allen: That s right. So the thing passed. It was courtesy to give a 

guy, generally, a call of the house over there. I was locked Tip 


hammering away and causing trouble between Brown and Jess Unruh. 
Pat Brown told Jerry Waldie and myself, and others, that he was 
only going to serve two terms as governor and would help Jess 
campaign for governor. 

Rowland: Who was the palace guards during this ~? 

Allen: Oh, Hale Champion and some of those guys. 

Rowland: Mesple, or ? 

Allen: No, Mesple was not that kind of a person. Mesple was a guy that 
stuck to his own knitting. Mesple was a pretty down-to-earth 
guy. He was honest. 

Rowland: Warren Christopher? 

Allen: Christopher wasn t with Brown, was he? 

Rowland: Yes, he was. Maybe he wasn t at first. 

Allen: But there were these able people like Julian Beck. The governor s 
office persuaded Judge Beck to come up. Beck did and soon asked 
to go back on the bench again because he couldn t take what the 
Brown palace guards were doing. It was the talk of Sacramento 
that Hale Champion wanted his wife, Marie, to be a running mate 
wanted Pat Brown to drop Glenn Anderson this last go--ound when 
the governor got beat drop Glenn Anderson and put his [Champion s] 
wife Marie up as lieutenant governor. 

Champion is supposed to have said, "Well, you know, the Mrs. has 
got a lot of publicity out of this kidnapping of ours, you know," 
and so forth and so on. 

Hale Champion didn t like Jess. Anybody that had any kind of an 
inside track, or anybody that looked like they were going to get 
an inside track would get his head chopped off by Champion 
around the governor s office. I think I went in the governor s 


in the chambers and so was Jess, There was Democrats 

locked up over there, all the Democrats. Everybody had to be 
there. All you had to do was rise up and call for a quorum 
call, and by God, they had to be there, see, or you had to know 
where they were, excused. 

So anyway, this was a farce. Brown had left Sacramento and he 
went over to Israel. He d been invited over to Israel, and the 
Republicans said he should ve stuck around so they could ve 
made some deals with him on the budget. Well their attitude was 
to raise the budget and not lower it. So they (Republicans) was 
the ones that put the call of the house on. So Jess was pretty 
sore that night. He said he was going to get out of the God 
damn place. He was going to resign. Jess had had it about that 
time because they had five Republicans they were little hell 


And then the next/ all hell broke loose, about "Big Daddy" 

locking them up. Well, the press don t go back on a story like 
that. They re not about ready to tell you the truth at all times 
about a story like that. 

You hear an awful lot about Jess being tightened down. Jess 1 
great ambition over there was to raise and elevate and get more 
salary for the legislature -- more prestige. And you ll notice 
out through some of these publications and other places that we 
had under Jess Unruh what they called "the number one business 
like legislature in the United States. 
Interpreting the Unruh-Brown Differences 

Then too, not only did the Republicans get to it, but some of the 
palace guards of Pat Brown, who had ambitions for themselves, were 


office four times. You would hear of these things. 

Rowland: What was Unruh 1 s relationship with the third house? 

Allen: About so-so. See, if you ll remember, Jess wrote many articles 
about the lack of independence from the third house of the 
legislature. He was very critical of the third house very 
critical, most all times. 

He had some backers, I don t mind telling you. And I don t 
think Jess would mind me telling you, either. Howard Ahmanson 
liked Jess. Also that Jess became Howard s protege which lasted 
until Ahmanson s death. 

Rowland: Who was once a Republican and a strong financial backer of the 
Republican party, was he not? 

Allen: Oh, yes. Oh.he remained a Republican until his death, and a 
contributor to the Republican party when he would feel he was 
backing the right candidate. Jess brought him into the campaign 
for Pat Brown and of course if you know, he was the guy that 
founded that $13 billion building and loan set up. 

Rowland: He founded Home Savings, didn t he? 

Allen: Home Savings, yes, and the Ahmanson Bank. Howard was a very 
generous person. Besides making donations to his alma mater, 
the University of Southern California, donations were made to 
the Los Angeles County museum. He constructed the thirteen 
million dollar Ahmanson theater. Adding also considerable money 
to the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion which was raised by public 
subscription. A dedicated financeer, Mark Taper, also donated 
a thirteen million dollar music center, making a tremendous 
cultural center on Bunker Hill in the heart of Los Angeles. 
Not only was Jess firmly in the friendship of Howard Ahmanson, 


but with Howard Edgerton, the founder of the Federal Savings 
and Loan. Unfortunately for Jess, the two Howards died about 
6 months before Jess started his campaign for Governor. 
You know, Jess would find out about a building and loan going 
in, and Jess would buy into it, then he would sell out later 
because the building and loan company would rise real fast at 
that time. Jess made some good money doing that. And he made 
no bones about it at all, no conflict of interest, but he was 
and is an excellent economist. I m talking now like I m an 
admirer of Jess, but really and truly, we had our differences of 

Rowland: Didn t he have a testimonial dinner committee also that forced 
lobbyists and third house 

Allen: Well, he had a testimonial dinner committee. They raised money 
for Pat Brown and the others. He was the one that put Pat into 
the governor s office, and Pat admitted it time after time, and 
said, "Now, I m going to only serve two terms, and then we re 
going to have to go out for Jess," before many of us. 
And then however, the palace guards (governor s office staff) 
wanted no part of Jess and just kept building and building a fire 
and cutting Pat and Jess off from one another and caused the 
whole damn ruckus. 

Rowland: That would be Hale Champion and 7 

Allen: Oh, Hale Champion and Don Bradley, and who in the hell was the 

other one? There were several of them around. Oh, yes. I know 
one of the guys was the very guy that Jess took under his wing 
and put his wife in the City Council of Los Angeles and got him 
started out as a lawyer when he came to California from Chicago. 


Rowland: Wyman? 

Allen: Yes. Wyman. He had everything full go for Wyman. I was never so 
embarrassed in all my life as Ros Wyman, who was a very brilliant 
girl, got carried away as chairman of the Governor s second 
inauguration, which was held at the Veteran s Memorial Auditorium, 
showing two brigadier generals and three major generals on how 
to salute the flag as though they were rookies. 
Oh yes, and of course, Jess had received great support from 
Lawrence Harvey and Harvey s sister, Carmen Warschaw, for 
Governor Brown. They were all friends of Jess and Brown 
double-crossed them by promising his support to Carmen for the 
State Chairman of the Democratic State Central Committee and 
then seconded the nomination of another person. I think some 
where along the line it must be told - Jess Unruh was the one 
that took Pat Brown by the hand and caused" his election to 
governor the first time - only later to get the shaft from 
ingrate Brown. 

Another substantial contributor to Pat Brown s campaign at the 
behest of Jess Unruh was Bart Lyton - another building and loan 
tycoon. Bart had started his career as a studio writer and a 
leader of his craft in the motion picture industry. He started 
out over in Las Vegas loaning money to entertainers of star 
status. When these guys would get into trouble and needed two 
thousand or so, Bart would loan it to them. He was a brash 
little guy. I liked him, but he was as loud as a brass band. 
With the interest on these loans he was able to start a large 
building and loan company in Beverly Hills. He even had his 
house wired with loud speakers. When he put on a party, every- 


body in the canyon would know about it and who was attending 

the party. 

The Brown forces took him for money when needed in campaigns. 

One time they got money from Bart to donate to a candidate who 


was a friend of Jess Unruh s. They did not hesitate a damn bit 

to call Bart. This really upset Jess because Bart was a great 
friend. Jess went to the governor and told him about some of 
the tactics of some of the so called Democrats who were friendly 
to Brown. Jess told him to "knock it off" and it was done 

But I can see this little fellow before me (Lyton) , Damn, he was 
a good guy! Incidently, Bart Lyton purchased the old Garden of 
Allah - a historic place where many of the Hollywood greats had 
lived. The Garden of Allah, a once swank rambling motel type 
of building, was rapidly deteriorating. Bart purchased it for 
the site of his 12 story building. When the old building was 
to be demolished, Bart sent out invitations to all of the old 
tennants and others. Movie stars of the bygone days and present 
ones showed up. I think it was probably Mary Pickford s last 
public appearance. Bart showed up in a devils suit with all his 
loud speakers and a bash that lasted a full week round the clock 
took place. I leave Bart Lyton on one more note. When he died, 
someone at the funeral said if Bart has taken his amplification 
system along, 

Rowland: What was Unruh s relationship with people like Ed Pauley, for 

Allen: With Ed Pauley, it was very good. Just thoroughly good. 

Rowland: E. George Lucky, was he another backer of Unruh s? 


Allen: No. No, E. George Lucky was from El Centre. He got mad at them 
around here. He was a former state senator and cattleman from 
Imperial County. He wanted the personal property tax removed 
on livestock. Each year the personal property was inventoried 
and collected by county assessors statewide. This caused live 
stock growers to ship or drive their herds over into Arizona. 
Many large department stores have inventories in Arizona and 
Nevada for this purpose. Brown promised him he would en 
courage and sign such a bill. 

Rowland: Lucky, you re talking about? 

Allen: Yes, E. George Lucky. He said he got tired of running his cattle 
across to Arizona every time they appraised personal property. 
When such a measure was sent to Brown s office, he vetoed it. 
When the bill was vetoed, Lucky sold every damn thing he had in 
California and went down into Texas. He was one of the lucky 
Texans that hit water, which was in an area where water was 
worth more than oil. 

Rowland: He was a Democratic financier for the party? 

Allen: Oh, yes. He was just like Bart. That 3art was a writer, and 

when he went to Las Vegas and some movie star would need a few 

/bucks in Las Vegas, he would let him have it. It was always re 
paid within 72 hours. Bart once told me the interest rate on 
these loans allowed him to start his building and loan company. 
When Bart died he left a raultimillion dollar estate. 

Rowland: Was Kent Redwine one of Unruh s supporters? 

Allen: No, no. Kent Redwine s a Republican. He represents the major 
motion picture industries. 
Those were Jess 1 friends. Jess didn t go out for the big 


scatter-gun deal. He stuck pretty much to his testimonials 
and so forth. 

Now, somebody told me that Jess put money in campaigns of 
members of the legislature. But I can tell you this -- he 
didn t in mine. Because Jess knew that I didn t care for it. 

Although, he did attend a couple of my testimonial dinners and 

bought a table or two/ brought some name entertainers along. 

I think we were charging at that time something like fifty 
bucks. So he come up with a five hundred-dollar bill for a 
table of 10 persons. 

Since our interview, one of my former colleagues refreshed my 
memory on another possible break between Pat Brown and Jess. 
Unruh was a John F. Kennedy man from the 1956 national Demo 
cratic convention. During that date and 1960, Jess began 
soliciting votes for Kennedy at the 1960 convention. 
He knew of my close friendship with Jim Farley and Joe Kennedy 
and from time to time would confer with me. He thought he had 

Pat Brown in his corner, but here again goes the "Great Vacillator." 

If Pat Brown had been a woman, he would have been pregnant every 

15 minutes. The trembling heap of Jello from time to time jumped 
on every hopeful presidential candidates band wagon, like a frog 
on a hot stove. Just before the roll call did Jess get him to 
stay hitched and hardly believed him when Brown answered roll call. 
President Kennedy remembered this and Jess became known as the 
Kennedy man in California. 

It got to be a game that would send Brown or his palace guards up 
the wall into orbit when something was wanted from Washington and 
the president s office would inquire "Has this been cleared by 


Jess Unruh?" One of the most comical bits of history ever to 
hit the floor of a national political convention occured when 
Pat Brown got his comeuppance for vacillating and broken 
promises by Hon. Augustus Hawkins, then Dean of the Assembly 
and now a member of the U.S. House of Representatives. Hawk 
ins rose after the first roll was called and demanded the 
California delegation be polled. When they reached Hawkins 
name - Gus rose to his feet and said, "I think it is time to 
keep the integrity and promise by our Governor Brown, who has 
been all over the lot with his promises. The people of this 
state elected him as a favorite son - to stand for president. 
I am keeping that faith to the people of our state - for him 
I cast one quarter of my vote for Governor Brown. 
The convention exploded into the old time Brooklyn anvil chorus. 
They booed Pat Brown for almost a half hour on national television. 
The convention chairman let them do it. Several of us heard the 
chairman say Brown has had this coming. He has vacillated and 
promised support to every hopeful candidate. We all knew why 
Gus did it - because so many times Hawkins was humiliated by 
Brown that s why the governor deservedly got the shaft he 
had coming. After that, he would have given Gus the capitol 



The bugging of Speaker Garland became known as the dictagraph case of 
1940. Robert E. Voshell was charged with maintaining a recording device in 
his room in the Senator Hotel connected to a microphone planted in Garland s 
room in the same building. Upon Garland s discovery and pronouncement of the 
deed to the assembly in 1940, the assembly created the Assembly Investigating 
Committee on Interference with the Legislature. The majority report of the 
committee was a severe indictment of the Olson administration for alledgedly 
spying upon legislative opponents of the governor. For text of majority and 
minority report see Assembly Journal, May 24, 1940, pp. 870-889. 

Arthur H. Samish and Bob Thomas, The Secret Boss of California; the Life 

and Times of Art Samish, (New York: Crown Publishers, 1971). 

The "one man-one vote" decision of the United States Supreme Court, 

headed by Chief Justice Earl Warren, was given in June 1964. Citing the U.S. 
Constitution s fourteenth amendment equal protection clause, the court declared 
that, for both houses of a state legislature the principle of equal population 
must prevail. Accordingly, a panel of federal district court judges in Calif 
ornia had declared the California "federal plan" of senate apportionment 
unconstitutional and ordered the legislature to adopt a new senate apportion 
ment plan no later than July 1, 1965. 

A panel of California federal district court judges, in ordering senate 

reapportionment, established a population variance of ten to five percent 
from the mean in creating new senate districts. 

Historical Benchmarks of Legislative Compensation, researched and 
documented by the Honorable Don A. Allen, Sr., California Legislator, Retired 
and Commissioned Legislative Historian for Life by the State Assembly and 
Senate in 1966. For copy of document, see Assemblyman Don A. Allen, Sr., 
supplementary materials file, The Bancroft Library, University of California, 


TAPE GUIDE - Don A. Allen 

Date of Interview: January 16, 1979 

tape 1, side A 1 

tape 1, side B 14 

tape 2, side A 34 

tape 2, side B 48 

tape 3, side A W 



Hon. Don A. Allen, Sr., retired California Legislator - 1966, and Legislative 
Historian, Commissioned for life by the assembly and senate chapters of 
1966. Is married to the former Margaret Sachs who was born in Hanover, 
Germany and they have one son, Master Sgt. Don A. Allen, Jr., U.S.M.C. 
retired - 4 grandchildren: Michael, Diane Murray, Don III, and Margaret 
Strain; 3 great grandchildren: Tyler and Cody Allen and Joshua Murray. 
The Hon. Don A . Allen, Sr. was born in the state of Iowa, educated in the 
public schools of Iowa and Nebraska, completed civil engineer course in 
M.C.I. Service Schools; completing additional courses in engineering, 
science and management and war training, University of Southern California 
and California Institute of Technology. He is the author of the California 
Legislative Source Book. 

Allen served with the 5th and llth Regiments, Intelligence Section, U.S. 
Marine Corps Expeditionary in Central American Republics. He was elected 
for 11 terms in the California Assembly and 3 two year and one four year 


term in the Los Angeles City Council. 

Don Allen served on 36 standing and special committees. In his last term/, 

1963 to Dec. 31, 1966, Allen was chairman of the Committee on Elections 

and Reapportionment where he received national recognition for setting 

the pattern for district representation of the U.S. Supreme Court ordered 

equal district representation. 

At the same time, Allen as chairman of the Joint Committee on Retirement 

introduced measures for investment of retirement funds which have earned 

several billion dollars for state employees, city and county employees and 

special district employees retirement funds. 

During 1968, Allen founded the Association of California Legislators. He is 



a life member of the Veterans of Foreign Mars with over fifty years active 
service, member of B.P.O. Elks, United Commercial Travelers, California 
Historical Society and American Association of Retired Persons. 



DO N A . A L L. r N S ft . 





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TIL. 443-7596 


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Los ANGL - 

TIL.. MA 0-2647 


Elections and JReappartianment 

November 16, 1965 

Honorable Edmund G. Brown 
Governor of California 
State C pitol 
Sacramento, California 

Dear Governor: 

Yesterday I sent to your office and to all the members of 
the Legislature, as well as to the press, a communication responding 
to the charge that neither yon nor they were familiar with the sub 
ject matter of the amendments which I incorporated into S.B. 13-2X 
(Teale) . I did this because I was deeply touched by the predicament 
in which you have placed yourself by pretending ignorance of the sub 
ject matter, by feigning shock to your sensibilities, and by dissimu 
lating an attitude of innocence while attempting a grandstand play at 
the expense of the Legislature over the question of legislative retire 
ment occasioned by reapportionment. 

Since you and I both know the background of this legislation, 
since you were fully aware of the contents of the Arnold bills (S.B. 
1068 in the General Session and S.B. 6X in the First Extraordinary 
Session) ; since you demonstrated that awareness by placing the subject 
matter on the agenda of the First Extraordinary Session by way of Item 
No. 6 of your Proclamation of June 29, and since you and I discussed 
the rnaestion of the possible necessity for having such legislation in 
the Special Session in order, to use your terminology, "to provide 
extra leverage on the Senators to support senatorial reapportionment," 
your efforts to dissociate yourself from knowledge of or responsibilit; 
for this matter produces in me an overwhelming sense of sympathy and 
pity on your behalf. I should like, however, to remind you, my dear 
Governor, that the ostrich-like behavior of burying one s head in the 
sand tends to produce an elevated and exposed dorsal posterior. 

How noble it is to read and hear your pronouncements about 
back-door legislating and how gratifying it is to learn that you inten 
to put a stop to it! When I read your glorious expressions of self- 
righteousness in which you deplore the method of legislating in this 
manner, it almost causes me to forget the piece of retirement legislat>| 
which you had introduced in the 1963 General Session, on behalf of som >l 
very close to you. The measurr died in Senate Committee so you put it 1 
call in the 1964 Special Session, whereupon it passed both houses and rt 
signed it into law. 


Honorable Edmund G. Brown -2- November 16, 1965 

Having witnessed your efforts to squirm out of any personal 
responsibility for this legislation, I am satisfied that I want no 
part of that enterprise. I offered the amendments to S.B. 13-2X, I 
am personally willing and ready to take responsibility for having done 
so, and I propose to shift that responsibility to no one else. This 
is not the first time in the history of this or any other Legislature 
in which the necessity to enact good laws on behalf of the people has 
been accompanied by incentives to secure the support of those who come 
to these halls with a perception of the public good which is somewha 
less keen than that which you and I happen to share. Having witnessed 
your performance on this issue for the past few days, it would shock 
me not at all to discover that you would deny any knowledge of such 

Nor would I pretend that the language I helped to add to 
S.B. 13-2X causes that piece of legislation to be the finest enactment 
ever to come down the legislative pike. I realize there are deficiencies 
in it. The causes of these deficiencies have too long a history to re- 
Tuire repetition here. 

Suffice it to say that in order to organize the required major 
ity to pass such legislation as Court-ordered reapportionment, medical 
care for our elderly citizens, and other vital laws to benefit our people, 
I felt it necessary to resubmit the Arnold measure substantially as it was 
offered, studied and voted upon in two previous sessions this year and in 
precisely the form in which you acknowledged in your Proclamation and press 
release of June 29. I did this in the full knowledge of the fact that this 
measure would probably not receive the highest accolades of that distin 
guished institution in our society, the free and enterprising press. I 
did it in the further knowledge that there are those wizards of democratic 
government whose reputations are so untainted, whose methods of operation 
are so respectable, and whose contributions to the public welfare are so 
Olympian that they care not for the grubby necessity to organize a majr-- 
ity that they deal only in perfect solutions to complicated problems. My 
feelings on this subject are well expressed by George Bernard Snaw j.n a 
famous statement which I have attached to this communication for your en 

There remains in my mind the nagging auestion about the possi 
bility that you really did not know anything at all about the subject of 
legislative retirement as it has been dealt with throughout this past ten 
and one-half months and despite our personal conversation on the subject 
following the close of the 1965 General Session. 

Can it be that someone in your office published Item No. 6 of 
your Proclamation of June 29 without your knowledge? Is it possible that 


Honorable Edmund G. Brown -3- November 16, 1965 

you were never aware of the contents of S.B. 1068 (Arnold) in the 
General Session, a bill which passed through two committees of each 
of the Houses of this Legislature and on the floor of both? It 
staggers my mind to think that you were unaware of the content of 
S.B.-6X in the First Extraordinary Session of 1965 which measure also 
was considered in two committees of the Senate, passed the Senate f~-- 
and was considered in one committee of the Assembly. 

Can it be that you and I stood face to face in your office 
one day between the end of the General and the beginning of the First 
Special Sessions and discussed this matter, but that I was there and 
you were not? 

Please keep jn mind, my dear Governor, that each of these 
measures and actions which I have recounted in the preceding paragraphs 
of this letter concerned the precise subject which is the substance of 
the current debate. 

Rather than attempting to stretch credulity to those lengths, 
I must assume that despite the overwhelming evidence to the contrary, 
you are indeed running the government of this State; that Proclamations 
issued over the seal of your high office are issued with your knowledgt 
and that conversations held between you and members of the Legislature 
remain at least as glimmers in your recollection. It has been said thz 
nothing contributes so much to an attitude of self-righteousness as a 
faulty memory. 

Even if we can assume that everything described to this poim 
somehow escaped your attention, I suggest you may have had an opportun: . 
to apprise yourself of this matter in the closing days of the Second 
Extraordinary Session had you been in Sacramento doing what Governors 
have done since the dawn of democratic government guiding, prod 3 nr 
helping the Legislature to pass the bills which have your sponsors!- p 
You may recall that in those closing days of the Second ExtraorUinc y 
Session of this year, while we were doing battle in the Legislature ov< 
medical care and the follow-up on reapportionment , you were engaged ou 
side of Sacramento with activities concerning your next campaign and w: I 1 
publicity-seeking ceremonies for the purpose of signing bills over whi< 
the battle had already been won. In short, if you had been more conce: < 
with being Governor in 1965 than with becoming Governor in 1966, it is 
possible that you may have been in a position to exercise that crucial 
leadership which would have obviated our taking any action which could 
now offend that noble, moral sensibility of yours which is now so outr f 

In closing, does it not strike you as ironic that all of thi 
could have been avoided by a simple telephone call from you to me, in 


Honorable Edmund G. Brown 


November 16, 1965 

with your own promise to let me know if your attitude had changed and 
in accordance with my request to your Legislative Secretary, Frank 
Mesple, to tell you that I would not submit these amendments if you 
were opposed to them. 





Shaw learned that a labor candidate named Joseph Burgess 
had refused to compromise on an issue and had thereby lost his 
seat in parliament. The playwrite-politician commented bitterly: 

"When I think of my own unfortunate character smirched with 
compromise, rotted with opportunism, mildewed by expedience, 
dragged through the mud of Borough Council and Battersea elections, 
stretched out of shape with wire pulling, putrified by permeation, 
worn out by 25 years pushing to gain an inch here, or straining to 
stem a backrush, I do think Joe might have put up with just a speck 
or two on those white robes of his, for the sake of the millions of 
poor devils who cannot afford any character at all because they ha\ 
no friend in parliament. Oh, these moral dandys, these spiritual 
toffs who is Joe, anyhow, that he should not risk his soul occas 
ionally like the rest of us." 





91&445-31 15445 9405 967 - 1628 
























Television Radio News From the Capitol and Northern Ca/ifomia 


**.** . - - ^Hf9 iK - 


































, . . .. - 

3715 Abbott Road 
Lynwood, California 90262 

25 January, 1972 

lion. Don A. Allen, Sr. 

Eleventh and L Building - Suite 352 

Sacramento, California 95814 

Dear Don: 

Your letter advising me that you have filed suit in the 
California Supreme Court for the recovery of that portion of 
the California Legislators retirement allotment being awarded 
to many members but not to all as they end their legislative 

It was most gratifying to me to learn that sufficient funds 
have been advanced by interested retirees to enable you to em 
ploy competent attorneys for the task. My contribution was 
small, yet I had to borrow to make the advance. But I think 
the measure squarely meets the equality principle laid down by 
the United States Supreme Court in their one-man, one-vote ruling. 

Having read the pleas by the attorneys for Mrs. Lyons and 
now these by you, there seems to be something missing. It would 
appear to me that the legislative intent of the original plan of 
compensation has been entirely overlooked, and the following points 
be raised: 

That the Court s attention should be directed to the undis- 
putable fact that there has been no change in the duties of the 
present members and that of us who served prior to 1966. 

I noted in some of the briefs filed by the Attorney General 
attempting to draw comparisons. He did did not know or entirely 
ignored the circumstances as the records will show, that we handled 
equal to or more than the present Legislature, as far as bills were 
concerned, only we did it by the use of 54 committees working from 
16 to 18 hours daily in committees or on the floor. 

We studied and set up the Freeway and Roads system. We es 
tablished the present Water System. Committees which I chaired 
aided County Sheriffs and Chiefs of Police to obtain the better 
ment a hundred or more rundown and dilapidated jails. I authored 
and broke the perplexing problem of the succession of persons to 
run this State in the event of a catastrophic event that would 
cause the demise of the elected State officials. 

I understand that Proposition "A" on the 1966 ballot allowing 
proper investment of funds for retirement systems, State, County, 
City, Special District and the Los Angeles Teachers Retirement 
System to have gained almost a half a billion dollars, thus adding 


Honorable Don A. Allen, Sr. Page Two 

25 January, 1972 

new benefits to the retirees of those systems. These items should 
be taken into consideration if any comparisons are to be made: 

That as far as the Constitution providing for a full time Legis 
lature, it has only made legal the things we used to do, by the 
fiction of stopping the clock and securing the calender. For example 
the history as shown in the Hand Book shows the Legislature convened 
January 2, 1939 and adjourned sine die June 20, 1939. 

However, we did not get out of the session until late in July 
through the use of those devises. Then we resolved ourselves into 
Interim Committees and worked just as hard from August to December. 
Let them notice the extraordinary sessions, all five of them which 
started January 29, 1940 and finally adjourned December 11, 1940. 

When wo were not actually on the floor, we were holding exten 
sive interim studies all over the State. That resulted in reducing 
a 39 million dollar deficit which was inherited by the incoming Gover 
nor Olson, so that by June 30, 1941, not only had we wiped out that 
deficit, but created a surplus. That is in the record. 

We were forced to maintain two homes, one by law in our dis 
tricts, and the second one at Sacramento, by necessity, for four to 
received but one round trip mileage allowance per session. Do you 
recall the $44.70 round trip allowance from Los Angeles to Sacramento 
when the plane fare in those days was almost $80? I understand one 
of the present members now commutes daily between Inglewood and 

That when we met in session, we received $12 per day for 100 
days. That was our supposed salary. However, it barely covered 
our hotel and meals. We had to stay at hotels in those days, and 
our rent went on 7 days a week, and we had to guarantee we would 
retain that room for the duration of the session. When the 100 
days were up, and we were still in session those extra 20 to 60 
days overtime, they were at the cost of the members. 

We received no per diems, district office, legislative help 
and only 8 secretaries to do the work for 80 members. We received 
only $25 per session for postage. Additional postage came out of 
our own pockets. We paid all telephone calls. When we wanted 
extra typing, we took it to the local business college or a public 
stenographer and we paid for it ourselves. We furnished our own 
cars, etc. 

When we returned to the districts, constituents called at 
our homes or places of business during the days and many evenings 
up to midnight. Our meals and any attempts to have guests in 
were interrupted by residents of our districts seeking information. 

As Former Speaker, the Hon. William Mosely Jones recently 
stated before the present Legislature when asked by a member, 


honorable Don A. Allen, Sr. 

25 January, 1972 Page Three 

"What did you fellows do for the poor?" The distinguished 
gentleman replied, "We were the poor." None of us envy the 
present li:qi.ulative compensation. We made the amount possible 
that the present members began to receive in 1966. The salary 
of $16,000 per year was the amount found to be correct in 1941. 
a quarter of a century previous . 

I suggest further, a background should be laid so that the 

present Justices of the Supreme Court could know the legislative 

intent and construction of AB 1083 which became Chapter 879- 

1947 session. Actually the measure got its first start during 
late fall of 1940. 

When the lion. T. Fenton Knight sought and received permis 
sion of the then Speaker Hon. Gordon Garland to allow Assembly 
man Knight to form a volunteer unpaid task force to study the 
needs of the Legislators. Mr. Knight wanted an unofficial com 
mittee of the Assembly, strictly non-partisan in nature. Those 
who were invited to serve and did were: Assemblymen Knight, 
C. Don Fields, Charles Lyon, Hubert Scudder, Republicans. The 
Democrat members were Clint Fulcher, Henry Meehan, Alfred "Bobby" 
Robertson, and myself. I am the only survivor of that committee. 

Assemblyman Knight had been concerned with the turnover, and 
knowing that further members could no longer afford to serve, he 
was very concerned by the tremendous cost to the State of Cali 
fornia by the loss of expertise. As he stated so often, "The 
State Legislature is the Board of Directors of the largest cor 
poration in this State, and for that matter, the fourth largest 
in the world. No private firm or corporation in existence could 
survive such a turnover of its Board of Directors." 

The Honorable T. Fenton Knight was .a noted, trusted, highly 
distinguished, well respected financier, a constructive conserva 
tive. Enjoying such an enviable reputation, it was easy for him 
to assemble one of the most outstanding group of business execu 
tives, financiers, economists and wage administrators from the 
field of business, industry and labor in the State. 

These people made time and motion studies of the Legislature, 
Studies were also made of the salary of the Governor, Controller, 
Secretary of State, and Treasurer. Because the compensation for 
the four other Constitutional officers was extremely low, it was 
an established fact that the Governor of California was paid a 
salary of $10,000 per year, and the Mayor of New York $40,000, 
the Mayor of Los Angeles received $15,000, etc. 

President Roosevelt s wage freeze which followed the outbreak of 
World War II, December 7, 1941, prevented our placing the issue 
before the people on the 1942 ballot. I am convinced it would 
have carried, because of the climate and the high respect held 
by the people for the Legislature at that time. Its passage would 
have precluded this lawsuit in which we now find ourselves engaged 

fighting for our just rights. 

Honorable Don A. Allen, Sr. Page Four 

25 January, 1972 

Unfortunately, the report with the names of the members of 
the Task Force and their detailed reasoning was not submitted in 
time to be printed in the Journal and become an official part of 
legislative history . I had these reports until files were removed 
from my office without my knowledge or consent. The 1941 Legislature 
adjourned sie die June 14. The report did not reach Mr. Knight or 
we legislative members until almost July 1, 1941. 

However, your paper does not show why the other three proposals 
were not adopted at the same time the retirement bill was introduced, 
AB 1083, 1947, passed and chaptered as 879. The Legislative Counsel 
advised Mr. Knight that the retirement portion was the only one which 
could be passed by the Legislature. The salary feature needed a vote of 
the people. 

Further, in 1948 when you were a City Councilman of Los Angeles 
having resigned in 1947, T. Fenton Knight served notice lie was re 
tiring in early 1948 because he was forced to defend the retirement 
bill before the courts. Two measures were presented in March of 
1948 - one which would have allowed the Legislature to set its sal 
ary and that of the other Constitutional officers. The Legislators 
were forced to exclude their salary fixing and the portion of the 
measure was adopted by the people at the November election. 

The original Knight proposal was watered down to $3,600 per year 
salary with limited expense while in session. By many distracting and 
intervening other distractions, a perplexing number of political con 
siderations arose. A watered down formula on cross filing was then 
occupying the attention of both parties. So, as a net result of that 
climite, the Legislature got the customary backhand treatment which 
was destined to repeat many times in the future. 

The items with regard to using the Supreme Court was dropped, as 

well as the formula of placing the salaries at 25% above the pay to 

the local elected officials and the $16,000 plus BLS. not to exceed 
5% was the one to be concentrated on. 

Oh, yes, Don, there was one other factor overlooked by you that 
in addition to the BLS. cost of living - the reports on the rise in 
the salary curves by the State Department of Labor Relations could 
be used by the Controller. 

Of great importance, I believe, a copy of the State Supreme 
Court s decision rendered August 13, 1948, Sacramento 5900 in Bank 
should be called to the present Court s attention. I believe it 
shows clearly the escalating factor which we believed we had made 
clear in the original legislative intent. Marked copy enclosed. 

To deny those members who served through those grubstake one- 
hundred-dollar-a-month, or the three-hundred, or even the five- 
hundred-a-month members when they become retired equal allotment 
compensation is an astonishing failure in consideration of the Third 
Appeals Court Ruling. This leads me to believe they did not have 
all the facts before them when they made their decision. 


Honorable Don A. Allen, Sr. Page Five 

25 January, 1927 

Seems to mo the offense is greatly enhanced since most of 
those same patriots who served for so little are the very ones 
who brought the retirement system into being and are now deprived 
of its full benefits as are even those present legislative members, 
who were not even citizens or residents of the State or Nation. 

I recall the hours and days contributed to the program s con 
struction and enactment by the brilliant Assemblyman, the late T. 
Fenton Knight. After the Legislature of California approved the 
measure, it was finally approved by this Honorable Court before it 
was put into motion. 

As for my part, I lent every effort within my time and ability. 
However, it was the Honorable T. Fenton Knight who did the brain 
and leg work and met the challenges if and when amendments were re 
quired, while I devoted my every minute to welfare and jail reform. 

Oldsters of California were, in those days, suffering biting 
hardships. Prisoners were, or had been, living under most unsanitary 
conditions; Health officers were without directive authority as to 
whether they had legal command in ordering jail and prison cleanli 

Don, I am positive you have taken the justifiable course in 
bringing this action and I know there are many of our retirees who 
are in financial straits due to their many years of supporting two 
home situations and at extremely low resources. In my case, I 
must remind you of the fact that my wife, Hazel, has been under 
doctors care for the past fifteen years. Medicare has helped a 
bit, but yet she has been denied, because of money shortages, the 
basic and refinement care she deserves. 

Thanks for keeping in touch. I hope for the justice we strug 
gled for. 


VK: jc 

P.S. By way of suggestion, in addition to the copy or this 
original you may want to send to your or our attorney, I would 
suggest you send a copy of this letter and your paoers to 
Phil Boyd, Tom Erwin, Ed Gaffney, Lloyd Lowrey and Tom Maloney. 
Although they were not members of the 1940-41 Task Force, they 
were co-authors of AB 1083 which was the measure which brought 
about the original Legislators Retirement. They may have some 
comment of value to the case. 





10S2 Ralph C. Dills, Jan. 28. To Com. on Ed. 

An net lo n<ld Suction 0012 to the foliicatiou Code, relating to loans to school 

districts from the county school service fund. 
Jnn. 28 Kind fir:.t time. To print. 
Jan. J .l From printer. To nuiniiiltCO. 
M. ir. 27 From ciMiimiltei?: \)a puss. 
Mar. 2S Iteud M-cuiul time. To engrossment. 
Mar. 31 Krporlcd correctly < iiRrossnl. 

A)inl 1 H -ad lliinl time, p.isM d, title approved. To Senate. 
April 2 In Scimd . Head lir;4 lime. To Com. on F.d. 
M;iy 1I> From nuuniiilee : l>o puss. 
Mny ] .* Head n cond time. 

May L S Kra-l tlnrd tnin 1 . passed, title approved. To ACMUlblJ. 
lay 2 . In A. v >embly. To riirolliiient. 

June ii UipurUtl corroctly riirullnl. To (iDvenior at 2 p.m. 
June lii Approved by (.ovornor. Chapter GSO. 

1083 Knight, Fiohr, Boycl, Cookc, Enviii, Gadncy, Gcddcs, Grant", Ilolli- 
batigh, Lowrcy, Maloncy, and iioberlson, Jan. US. To Coin. 
on G. E. & E. 

An act to ndd Cbupter 3.5 to Tart 1 of Division 2 of Title 2 of the Government 

Code, r- ..-itinc to the retirement, with retirement allowances, of ileuibcru of 

the Legislature. 

Jan. 28 Heud first timo. To print. . - . 

Jan. .2 .) I rom priutcr. To co;..mittc. 

May 15 From eomroitt: Amend, and do pass as amended. 
May Hi second time, ntiit-ndttl, to printer. 

Mny VJ 1 rom printer. To eiiKrossnu-nt. Hcported correctly engroKsed. 
^Iliy 21) Kriid third tiitii 1 , |i:is>o<I, ti(U- npprovcil. To Si-naic. 
May 21) In Senate. Krml lirst time. To C mn. on Oov. IClF. 
May 27 From committee.: Atnund, anil do n* nmcuded. 
May 28 Krail nerond time, siuiendcd, to printer. From printer. 
June 2 ICeail third time, pus.scU, title approved. Notice of motion to reconsider 

iriveo by Senator Swine. 

June I! Notice of motion to reconsider continued until next legislative day. 
x June 4 Reconsideration grunted. Rend third time, uasiiod, title approved. 

To Asscmlily. 

June f In AwernUy. Concurrence In Senate amendments pending. ^ 

June G Sonate aiuvudmciilK concurred in. To enrollment. 
June ft Hcported correctly enrolled. To IJovcrnor at 3 p.m. 
June 20 Automatically l-cnme law without Governor s signature. Chapter 870. 

30S4-- Gaffncj , George D. Collins, and Berry; Jan. 28. To Coin, on 
Mun. & C. G. 

An act to a.M Section 20 .)ri?.5 to the Covfrnment Code, rvbtiii); to the State 
Emjiloyces Retirement System in respect to the .-ctireiutnl of local lirctuen. 

Jan. 28 Uend first time. To print. 

Jim. 2!) Krorn printer. To romniittce. . . " 

June 5 J- ror.i committee : Do puss. 

Juue Ucud svi-itud lime. To engrossment. 

j une 7 Krporled correctly engrossed. Head third time, passed, title approved. 

To Senate. 

j,, nc <( ii, Senate. Head first time. To Com. on GOT. Eff. 
June 17 From committee: Do pass. 
June 18 Head second time. 

June 2iV- -Ki-ad third lime, jiassed. title approval. To Assembly. 
June 21V In Assembly. Ti> enrollment. 

June 2(1 Urpiirutl correi-ily enrolled. To Governor at 11.30 p.m. 
July 23 1 otUet vetoed ly (iovi-rnor. 



INDEX Don A. Allen, Sr. 

Ahmanson, Howard, 77 

Anderson, Glen, 76 

Arnold bill, 47-50 

Arnold, Stanley, 49 

assembly. See California assembly; California Republican Assembly 

Badham, Willard F. , 8-9 

Bagley, William!., 68, 74 

Begovich, John, 45-46 

Below, William, 42 

Betts, Bert, 51, 59-60 

Bonelli, Frank, 26, 37, 61-62 

Bonelli, William, 19 

Bowron, Fletcher, 23-24, 26 

Bradley, Don, 78 

Brown, Edmund G., Sr. (Pat), 33, 35, 37, 47-48, 50-51, 61-62, 75-76, 78-83 

Burns committee. See California senate; un-American activities committee 


Burns, Hugh M. , 12-13, 16, 37, 46, 61-62 
Bushnell, Robert, 62-63 
Butler, Smedley D., 5 

California assembly, 17-18, 21, 36, 46, 73 

assembly bill 1 (1965) , 43 

elections and reapportionment committee, 26 

lockup of, 74-76 

speaker election, 21 
California legislature 

economy bloc, 16-18, 20-22 

perquisites in, 53-54 

salary increase and, 55-56, 58 

un-American activities joint committee (1941-1947), 13-14 
California Republican Assembly, 63-66 
California senate, 24, 26 

senate bill 6 (1965) , 43-44 

senate bill 13 (1965), 48-49 

un-American activities committee (1947-1970), 13 
Champion, Hale, 76 
Combs, Richard E., 13-14 
Cranston, Alan, 68-71 


Daley, Jeanette, 17, 19, 21, 34 

DeLapp, Tony, 18 

Democratic national conventions 

1920, 7 

1956, 82 

1960, 82 
Democratic party, 7-10, 21, 70, 75 

state central committee chairman, 79 
dictograph case, 9-10, 29, 30 
Dills, Ralph, 57 

Dirksen amendment (.f ederal) , 39-40, 43, 46. See also reapportionment 
disaster council, 29. See also war council 
district attorney s office, Los Angeles County, 7 
Dodge, Grenville, 4 

economy bloc (Calif ornia legislature) , 16-18, 20-22. See also State 

Relief Administration; Culbert Olson 
Edgerton, Howard, 78 

1934 legislative, 9 

1938 legislavtive, 9 

1956 special assembly, 25 

1958 state controller, 68 

1964 U.S. Senate, 70 

1966 Proposition 1-A, 52, 55, 56 

1966 gubernatorial, 62 

1968 U.S. Senate, 66 

campaign endorsements, 62, 66 

campaign financing, 77-80, 82 
Elliott, Edward, 51, 60 
Eu, March Fong, 67 

Field, C. Don, 17-18, 27 

finances, 71-73. See also inheritance tax appraising 

Garland, Gordon, 9, 15, 21, 28, 30 

governor s office (Brown), 75-76, 78, 82 

governor s office (Olson), 9, 20 

Harris, Joel, 64 
Harvey, Lawrence, 79 
Hawkins, Augustus, 83 
Henderson, Charles, 30 

inheritance tax appraising, 71 
and state controller, 67-70 


Johnson, Gardiner, 21, 34, 54 
Johnson, Lyndon Baines, 38 

Kellums, Jesse Randolph, 19 
Kibers, Jeff, 19 
Kirkwood, Robert, 68 
Kleps, Ralph, 59 
Knox, John T. , 57 
Kuchel, Thomas, 66 

League of Cities, 23 

legislative members salary increase. See California legislature, salary 

increase; elections, 1966 Proposition 1-A 
Legislative Sourcebook, 42 
legislature. See California legislature 

lobbying, 31, 33, 77-78, 82. See_ alsp_ elections, campaign financing 
Lore, Elmer, 53, 73 
Los Angeles, city of, 24-25 
Los Angeles, county of, 7, 43 
Lucky, E. George, 80-81 
Lyton, Bart, 79-81 

Marine Corps (U.S.), 5-6, 8 
McAdoo, William Gibbs, 30 
Meredith, James, 41 
Merriam, Frank F., 10, 73 
Mesple, Frank A., 50, 61, 76 
Miller, George, Jr., 31-32 
Millington, Seth, 17, 19, 21 
Mills, James R. , 55 
Mosk, Stanley, 10 

oil interests, 32 

Olson, Culbert, 9-10, 14-16, 18-20, 28, 30, 54 

Pauley, Ed, 80 
Philbrick, Howard R. , 30 

Rafferty, Max, 51, 66-67 

Reagan, Ronald, 63 

reapportionment (California legislature) 

1960 Bonelli initiative, 30-31 

1962 Bonelli initiative, 30-31, 33 

1964 U.S. Supreme Court decisions affecting, 23-24, 37, 43, 44, 46 


reapportionment (California legislature) (continued) 

1965 California Supreme Court decision affecting, 46-47 

1966 assembly, 45-46 

1966 senate, 26-27, 36, 38-41 

assembly bill 1 (1965) and, 43, 61 

Dirksen amendment (federal), 39, 44, 46 

Los Angeles County and, 43 

retirement benefits and, 47-50, 61 

senate bill 6 and, 43, 44 

senate bill 13 (1965) and, 48-50 

Wellman Commission, 35 
Rees, Thomas M. , 36, 43 
Republican party (California), 8-9, 17, 21, 62, 74-75, 77 

California Republican Assembly, 63-66 
retirement benefits, 51-52, 55, 59-60. See also reapportionment, 

retirement benefits 
Riles, Wilson, 66-67 
Riley, Ray, 73 
Rodda, Albert S., 57 
Roosevelt, Franklin Delano, 30 
Rosenthal, Ben, 18-20 

SCMWA. See State, County, and Municipal Workers of America 

SRA. See State Relief Administration 

Salditch, Martin, 60 

Salinger, Pierre, 70 

Salyers, Clarence, 32-33 

Samish, Arthur H., 34 

Selvin, Herman, 38 

senate. See California senate 

Shults, Albert, 32 

Silvers, Phlll, 26 

Smith, Steven, 41-42 

State, County, and Municipal Workers of America, 11-12 

State Relief Administration, 10, 19, 22, 72. See also economy bloc 

California legislature) ; Culbert Olson 
Stevenson, Cyril, Jr., 63-66 
Swing, Ralph, 24, 28 

Teale, Stephen P., 36, 46, 48-49 

Tenney committee. See California legislature, un-American activities joint 

committee; California senate, un-American activities committee 
Tenney, Jack B., 13-14 

Unruh, Jesse M. , 23-24, 26, 37, 42-43, 46, 55, 70, 73-74, 76-83 


Vandergrift, Rollin, 11 
Veneman, John, 76 

Waldie, Jerome R., 40 

war council, 28-29. See also disaster council 
Warren, Earl, 27, 30, 33, 36-38, 47 

and conversion to annual budget, 17, 28, 58 
Warschaw, Carmen, 79 
Welsh, Ralph L. , 9 
Woolwine, Tom, 7 
Worker s Alliance, 11 
Wyman, Rosalind, 79 

Yorty, Samuel, 13-15, 24 

James H. Rowland 

Holds B.A. from Western Connecticut State College 
and M.A. from San Francisco State University, with 
additional studies at Hunter College and Columbia 
University in New York, and the University of 
California, Berkeley. 

Teacher and administrator in public and private 
schools for five years. Developed specialization 
in California legislative history through master s 
studies on higher education and legislative affairs. 

Interviewer/Editor for Regional Oral History Office, 
1978 to present. 

Author of articles in professional journals. 

/ \